Where there’s a Will…

by | Aug 29, 2016 | Wills and Estates

The Succession Act 2006 (NSW) provides that certain people, including a spouse and children of a deceased person are eligible to make a claim that provision (or in some cases further provision) ought to have been made from the estate of the deceased.

The Court must consider whether the applicant has been left with inadequate provision for his or her proper maintenance, education and advancement in life. It will also take into account other factors such as the size of the estate, the relationship between the applicant and deceased and the personal circumstances of any competing parties. If the Court determines it should make provision, or further provision it must then decide in what terms.

A large category of people is entitled to inspect all and any copies of other wills that have been made by a deceased person during life. While a prior will may be revoked, it cannot be destroyed by any person unless directed to do so in the presence of the will maker.

There are strict limitation periods for making a claim in New South Wales. The Court has discretion to extend the time limit but it will not happen automatically. As Brereton J said in Stone v Stone [2016] NSWSC 605;

“This limitation period is not merely procedural nor a mere formality, but is substantive. An applicant for such an extension must demonstrate that there was sufficient cause for not having made the application within the 12-month period.”

If you require assistance you should contact Cheney Suthers Lawyers to make an appointment.

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