Deceased Estates Disputes
CONTESTING A WILL
There may be many reasons why you might want to contest a will after the death of a loved one. You may feel justifiably that you have not been treated fairly by the deceased or some other family member.
Geoff Jenkin has acted in many cases, not only for claimants, but also for beneficiaries defending a deceased estate claim. Geoff Jenkin can help executors and trustees who usually act with neutrality but who nevertheless always need legal representation.
How To Challenge A Will
Law Reform (Testamentary Promises) Act 1949
This applies where a person has made promises of testamentary provision in return for services rendered but who has died before making the promised will changes.
Geoff Jenkin helps claimants to dispute a will under this particular statute.
The Property (Relationships) Act 1976
This applies after death of married or de facto couples. The Act provides a useful tool to resolve property ownership issues that arise after death. The Act is also useful for “trust busting” purposes. Assets transferred to a trust can be recovered in certain circumstances under ss44, 44C and 44F of the Property (Relationships) Act 1976.
Family Protection Act 1955
The law recognises that a person has the right to make his own will. However, certain family members such as partners, children, and in some cases grandchildren can contest a will according to the provisions of the Family Protection Act 1955.
Wills Act 2007
Assistance can be given in regard to validation of wills where the procedures set out in the Act for the signing of wills have not been properly followed.
Misconduct Around Signing
The High Court has broad powers around misconduct surrounding the signing of a will. This includes cases where the deceased has been subjected to undue influence and/or duress or in circumstances where the deceased lacked mental capacity when he or she signed. These cases are often complex and difficult to prove.
General Administration Problems
Problems often arise in the general administration of a deceased estate, whether there is a will or not. Parties may be able to apply to the High Court for directions in the administration of a deceased estate and/or for the removal of executors and appointment of new executors. Contentious probate applications in solemn form are a specialist area of Geoff Jenkin.