New legislation limits certain claimants from challenging a will

Back in early October, we posted an article regarding new legislation in Victoria that, at that time, had been introduced but not passed. The proposed legislation was going to severely restrict the rights of adult children and former spouses and domestic partners to challenge a will or testamentary trust.

The new legislation that was passed by Parliament in November ended up being a bit less severe than proposed.

Contrary to what was expected, the new legislation still allows adult children to make a claim on a will or a testamentary trust. As was expected, widows, widowers, minor children and disabled children will also continue to be able to make a claim.

However, it does restrict the rights of certain categories of claimants – such as grandchildren and some household members – from challenging a will or testamentary trust. These claimants will not be able to make a claim on the estate unless they can prove that they were wholly or partly dependent on the deceased for their proper maintenance and support.

The legislation is intended to restrict unmeritorious claims.

Tthe legislation is expected to come into force in 2015.

Castle Corporate provides legal advice on protecting estate assets and succession planning. If you or your clients need assistance, please give us a call on 9899 9300.