Wills & Estates
Recent Cases Conducted by Galbally & O’Bryan
Son challenges father’s Will
- A middle aged son sought our help in relation to his father’s estate. He was one of three sons and had been left nothing in his father’s Will.
- He had not been close to his father for some years.
- He wanted to know whether he could claim provision.
- Our advice was he could contest the Will on the ground that his father failed to discharge his responsibility to make provision for his maintenance and support.
- The client’s claim was settled at a court ordered mediation. He received 25% of the net value of the estate.
Step-children get benefit from an estate when excluded from the Will
- Our clients were step-son and step-daughter of their deceased step-father.
- His estate was worth over $500,000.00 and they have been left $5,000.00 each.
- Our advice was, notwithstanding they were step-children each had grounds to contest the Will because their step-father had a moral responsibility to provide for them.
- A settlement was achieved at a court ordered mediation where each of our client’s shares increased from $5,000.00 to $75,000.00.
Domestic partner receives a benefit when excluded from the Will
- Our client was an elderly woman who had been in a domestic partner relationship with the deceased for over twenty years. The estate was worth approximately $800,000.00.
- His Will made no provision for her.
- We advised that the Will could be challenged on the ground that the deceased had a moral responsibility to provide for our client.
- A claim was issued seeking a share of the estate.
- The client’s claim was settled at a court ordered mediation. She received one third of the net value of the estate.
Close friend / carer contests Will
- A middle aged woman asked for help regarding her close friend’s estate.
- She and the friend had lived together for over twenty years and during the last ten of those years she had cared for the friend who had become increasingly frail and immobile which prevented her maintaining full time employment.
- The friend left her nothing in the Will.
- Our advice was the Will could be challenged as the friend had a moral responsibility to provide for her.
- A settlement was reached early on at an informal settlement conference.
- She received approximately 20% of the net estate which was worth approximately $1.2 million.
Executor defends Will against challenge
- An executor asked for help in defending a Will against challenge on the ground of invalidity due to the deceased’s alleged mental incapacity.
- Our client consulted us seeking advice how the Will could be defended.
- Medical records and related evidence was assembled to demonstrate mental capacity to make the Will.
- The case was settled at a court ordered mediation. The Will was successfully defended from challenge.