The Father who left his money to charity
Our client, Michael the son of the deceased, came to us with a quest to challenge his Father’s will.
In his will, the Father had disinherited his 4 children and left his entire estate, which was valued at around $1,500,000, to an animal charity.
The Father had not spoken to Mike or any of his other children for 5 years and most of the children were not speaking to each other. Each party was separately legally represented. All of the children who attended said that the Father was a difficult man and made his will with the intention to hurt them.
We invited the father’s children and the charity to a mediation prior to commencing court proceedings. The Father’s (short term) de facto partner also sought to attend the mediation.
After day long negotiations, the parties agreed on a settlement whereby the charity would receive 25% of the asset pool (being aware that if the matter went to court, the children would likely receive the lion’s share and much of the estate would be eroded in legal costs). The de facto partner accepted a settlement of 10% and the children shared the remaining 65% between them.
Can I afford it?
We appreciate that Wills & Probate cases can take a while to resolve. The costs can escalate unexpectedly, which is why at the commencement of a case, we provide you with the likely estimate of costs and guide you on your best way of minimising these costs.
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