Danger Zone: costs against plaintiff in FPA in small estate (NSW)

Family provision claims in small estates is an inherit danger zone for claimants and lawyers. The recent case of Wengdal v Rawnsley [2019] NSWSC 926 has demonstrated this again where Justice Hallen has ordered that the plaintiff’s claim be dismissed and the plaintiff pay the defendant’s costs on the ordinary basis. In this case, the deceased…

Wife support: FPA by widow dismissed with costs (NSW)

It is a suggestion that arises throughout many estate disputes that the claim of a widow on an estate should be paramount to those of other family member who survive the deceased person. However, as each case is determined on it’s merits, this is not always the case. Yesterday, the Supreme Court of New South Wales…

FPA 7 years out of time: Allowed on Appeal (WA)

In an unusual case published a few weeks ago, the Western Australian Court of Appeal allowed an extension of time for an adult son to bring a claim against his late father’s estate 7 years after the time limit expired. The claim was dismissed at first instance and the adult son appealed asserting 9 different…

Important Amendments to Qld Succession Laws: a sign of the times

We live in a different age.  We live in a world where blended families are a common fixture within our communities.  I, personally, know many beautiful blended families and I’m sure many of my readers do also.  In fact, I’m sure there are some of my readers that may know blended families that are closer…

Burden of secrets: Claim for secret trust within an FPA by grandchild (NSW)

Within a family dynamic, particularly as the elderly age and consider their demise, it’s common to hear of conversations being held between family members of “understandings” and benefits that may flow the next generation on the death of the elder. Promises made and, sometimes, others rely on those alleged promises. So what happens where there’s a secret of a…

Dare to Care: Close personal relationship in FPA (NSW)

Many people would have a different view of exactly what a “close personal relationship” may look like. In New South Wales Family Provision law, their collection of people who may make a claim on an estate further further provision is much wider than that of Queensland.  Under section 57(1)(f) of the Succession Act 2006 (NSW),…

A Shared Life: Family provision claim by same-sex defacto of 30 years

For those of my readers who are not familiar with estate litigation matters, it is common for parties to apply to the Court to “sign-off” on negotiated outcomes following a private mediation.  This is particularly so where the estate property is comprised of real property. As such, I thought it worthwhile to write a short note on the latest case of Roberts…

Competing Relationships: Needs of De Facto vs Adult Children

Relationships and tragedy are a complex maze of emotions.  In the very sad case of Gore v Rouse [2017] QDC 98, Mr Gore was tragically killed in a tree lopping incident at the home of his de facto partner, Mrs Rouse. Mr Gore was 63 years old. Mr Gore was survived by three adult children, Tracey (from his first marriage),…

Timing is everything: FPA out of time by 10 days allowed on appeal

For those of you who aren’t aware, last year saw the Supreme Court dismiss a family provision application that was filed only 10 days past the limitation date in the matter of Mortimer v Lusink & Ors [2016] QSC 119.  As you probably would appreciate, this was met with quite a lot of interest in my world.  I’m sure…

Lost time is never found again: FPA 63 days out of time dismissed

Lost time is never found again – Benjamin Franklin. Another example of how important deadlines are in a family provision application (FPA), the Queensland Supreme Court was called to determine an application for leave to proceed with an FPA out of time. The case of Frastika v Cosgrove as executor of the estate of Russell…

FPA x2: Grandson vs Daughter – Close Personal Relationship

  This month, the Supreme Court of New South Wales, determined a family provision claim by a self-sufficient adult daughter and an adult grandson. In the case of Re Filomena Rodi, deceased [2016] NSWSC 1696, the deceased was survived by four children, 2 daughters and 2 sons, and had left her estate to them equally….

An offer is an offer, no matter how small?: Costs in FPA after parentage test negative. Dismiss/Discontinue?

Recently, the Supreme Court of New South Wales  was tasked with determining whether the Court should dismiss or discontinue proceedings following the plaintiff’s parentage testing resulting in him not being the deceased’s child and therefore not an eligible person to make a claim. In the matter of Patterson v Scott [2016] NSWSC 1477 the Court heard that the plaintiff had commenced a family provision…