1975 Act claims: What is ‘maintenance’?

Vlad Macdonald-Munteanu reviews the quantification of awards under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 for elderly claimants ‘The take-away point is to help the court help you by ensuring that all figures are backed up with evidence and, where appropriate, expert reports.’ For many years, practitioners and judges alike have grappled with …
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Blackwell Deceased [2017] EWCA 2182 (Civ)

Wills & Trusts Law Reports | Winter 2018 #170

The applicant, Mr Warner, was the unmarried partner of the deceased. Before her 
death they had lived together for 19 years at a property in Tewkesbury. Mr Warner continued to live in this property after her death. Mrs Lewis, the daughter of the deceased, brought a claim in the County Court for possession of the property and for the return 
of certain items under the Torts (Interference with Goods) Act 1977. Mr Warner 
defended this claim, and made a separate application for relief under the 
Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 (‘the 1975 Act’). It was agreed by th...

Book review: Every base covered

Simon Morris reviews a perennial classic on Inheritance Act claims Ross on Inheritance Act Claims (4th ed) Author: Sidney Ross Published by: Sweet & Maxwell Publication date: 22 September 2017 ISBN: 9780414060814 £199.00 Over the course of recent years I have come to consider Ross on Inheritance Act Claims as an indispensable guide to a …
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Inheritance Act: Defining maintenance

Michael Radnor provides an analysis of the Court of Appeal decision in Lewis v Warner as to what constitutes reasonable financial provision ‘Maintenance, and thus the applicant‘s need, does not need to be purely financial as it is “flexible and falls to be assessed on the facts of each case“, and therefore could include the …
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Contentious probate: Beyond the grave

Emma Collins provides a summary of case law developments regarding claims under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 ‘The charities’ claim was not on a par with that of the claimant, but while the charities’ claim was not based on personal need, they depended heavily on testamentary bequests for their work.’ Family …
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Ball v Ball [2017] 1 EWHC 1750 (Ch)

Wills & Trusts Law Reports | Autumn 2017 #169

The Deceased was married to James Ball. They had had eleven children, including the three claimants and eight of the nine defendants. In or around 1991, the family split, when the three claimants reported their father to the police for sexually abusing them when they were younger. The Deceased felt that the complaints were exaggerated, and was annoyed that they had been made public. As a result, on 27 May 1992 the Deceased made a will excluding those three claimants from benefit, dividing her estate between her eight remaining children and one of her grandsons. The will was professional ...

Martin v Williams [2017] EWHC 491 (Ch)

Wills & Trusts Law Reports | Autumn 2017 #169

This was an appeal against a decision of the County Court ([2016] WTLR 1075) to make reasonable financial provision under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 for Mrs Joy Williams from the estate of her deceased partner Norman Martin. Under the terms of Mr Martin’s last will his entire estate passed to Mrs Maureen Martin, Mr Martin’s wife, from whom he was separated, but to whom he remained married until the date of his death. Mr and Mrs Martin had not divorced but they had made an informal arrangement regarding their separation.

HHJ Gerald ma...

Nahajec v Fowle Case No: C30LS199

Wills & Trusts Law Reports | Autumn 2017 #169

By a will dated 7 July 2015 Stanley Nahajec (‘deceased’) left the whole of his estate valued at £265,710 to the defendant whom he appointed as sole executor. The deceased died on 19 July 2015 and a grant of probate to the defendant was issued on 15 October 2015. The claimant, who was one of three adult children of the deceased, brought a claim under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 (‘Act’) on 12 April 2016. One of her half siblings, Mark Nahajec, similarly made a claim under the act which was settled by a payment of £22,000 though his...

The 1975 Act: Discretion to dispose

Siân Hodgson considers the differing statuses of spouse and cohabitee in claims under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 ‘While one judge may exercise his or her discretion in a different way from that of another judge (making 1975 Act claims inherently risky), it is the factors which a judge takes into …
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In Practice: Combined forces

Shahida Jogi and Rachel Lim outline how private client and family lawyers can work together ‘It is imperative that all matrimonial clients are advised to make or review their will at their initial appointment.’Lawyers today must take a collaborative approach in conjunction with their peers and colleagues to provide rounded and holistic advice to their …
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