CONTESTING WILLS: ISSUES FOR SPOUSE/CIVIL PARTNERS, AND UNMARRIED PARTNERS WHO WISH TO CONTEST A WILL
|The contents of this page is general information only and should not be considered to be legal advice. It does not take into account the many variations in the laws between the various Australian States. You should obtain your own legal advice applicable to your own personal situation.|
Losing your spouse/civil partner or unmarried partner is a difficult time. The distress suffered may be exacerbated if you do not receive a share of your spouse or partner’s estate in their Will.
This section considers your rights to contest the Will of your deceased spouse / partner and some of the problems that you may face in doing so.
As the laws of each State vary, please treat this as general information and click below for more information on who is qualified to bring a claim in your State.
A spouse/ partner has the strongest rights. In many instances the rights of an unmarried partner, whether heterosexual or homosexual, will be very different, and usually weaker. If you were not married or in a registered civil partnership with your spouse / partner, you should obtain legal advice specific to your own situation.
A spouse/civil partner and an unmarried partner may be eligible to contest a Will where no or insufficient reasonable financial provision was made for them in their deceased partner’s Will.
Many factors must be proved in order to be successful in challenging a Will. If your claim is successful, the court will order that a surviving spouse/civil partner or unmarried partner will take a share, or a larger share, of the deceased’s estate.
A court will examine the entire circumstances of the case such as the duration of the relationship, and the financial resources and needs of the surviving spouse/civil partner or unmarried partner.
- What if I have been left out of the Will?
- What does ‘eligible claimant’ mean?
- Who is considered to be an ‘unmarried partner’?
- Spouse/civil partner/unmarried partner: As the spouse or partner of the deceased person, what does a spouse/civil partner/unmarried partner need to show to be successful in a Family Provision Claim?
- Separated or Divorced? What if we had a pre-nuptial agreement? Does this mean anything?
- What happens if my spouse / civil partner and I have just separated? What if we have not finished dividing our assets in our divorce?
- What if my spouse and I have been divorced / separated for years – am I able to make a claim against my former spouse’s estate?
CWPL can easily answer these common questions for You:
- Am I entitled to contest the Will, and claim for more?
- What is the value of the asset pool in the estate?
- Can CWPL boost the pool with assets that were disposed of on or before death?
- How do I claim additional rights e.g. my share of the home and pension entitlements?
- What is the legal effect of the Will on me?
- How am I affected if the Will is invalid such as due to Undue Influence?
CWPL: NOT a traditional law firm