Family Law Hub

Inheritance Act

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  • The father left the entirety of his estate to his daughter. No provision was made for his wife, who was applying for permission to bring a claim out of time under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975. Floyd LJ held that the judgment of the district judge in the case had been flawed to the extent that an appellate court was entitled to interfere. The district judge wrongly discounted the fact that the wife risked losing her home if the extension of time was refused, and wrongly weighed in the balance the failings of the wife's solicitors. King LJ and Henderson LJ agreed, and the court exercised its discretion to extend time. Judgment, 30/10/2019, free
  • The couple married in 2016 after a long relationship, and the husband died later that year. The appeal was concerned with whether an application under s 2 of the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 could be made out of time, whether a beneficial interest under a discretionary trust instead of outright provision amounted to reasonable financial provision, and the relevance of a "stand-still agreement" in place while an out of court settlement was pursued. Asplin LJ found that the explanation for the lapse of time in this case was clear, and it had been wrong of the judge to find that the wife had received sufficient advice about the time limit and the 1975 Act. King LJ and Baker LJ agreed. The court exercised the power in s 4 of the 1975 Act to allow the wife to bring a claim out of time. Judgment, 31/07/2019, free
  • The former wife sought permission to bring a claim out of time for reasonable financial provision from the estate of the deceased. No provision had been made for her in the will, and a pre-nuptual agreement had provided that in the event of the marriage failing she would receive a lump sum of £10,000 and a flight to the Philippines, but no maintenance, property or financial provision. Master Shuman found that the former wife had not given a sufficent explanation for the delay, and decided that permission should not be granted. Judgment, 30/07/2019, free
  • The widow brought claims against the two daughters of her deceased husband. Deputy Master Linwood found that the will did not make reasonable financial provision for her, and awarded the widow her proposed nursing home charges plus an amount for pension loss, totalling £731,309. One daughter’s conduct included financial abuse, oppression via court proceedings, and attempting to mislead various parties including the court. She had flouted court orders, dissipated savings and investments, and failed to account for her activities as executor, the holder of the power of attorney and the recipient of rent. He drew adverse inferences against her and found that she should forfeit £80,000 of her share of the residue to the widow. The other daughter would forfeit £1000. Judgment, 08/07/2019, free
  • Widow's out of time application under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 in circumstances where provision for her had been made by way of 2 trusts. The application was refused. Judgment, 05/03/2019, free

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