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Brisbane-Lawyer
Brisbane-Lawyer, Solicitor - Admitted 2005
Category: Australia Law
Satisfied Customers: 14361
Experience:  I did my law degree at the University of Queensland
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Hi there I am a beneficiary of a will for my stepfather who

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Hi there
I am a beneficiary of a will for my stepfather who died one year ago (16 August 2012). I have just been advised by the solicitor acting for the Executor that there has been a claim for provision (by another dependent step-son who was not included in the will). The solicitor simply provided me with a copy of the Notice of Claim and no further advice. Do I need to do anything in order to protect the amount that I was left in the will? The Executor has been hostile and so I am not confident that I can get correct advice from that corner. The will provides for specific $ amounts for 3 stepsons (me included) and the rest (the actual wording of the will - and which represents approximately 50% of the total estate) is to be divided up among grandchildren. The claimant is an eligible person and has a good grounds.
Do I need to do anything in order to protect the amount that I was left in the will?

Basically, you simply need to attend Court and be ready to testify. If the claimant has a good case though, as you mentioned, then in all likelihood it would be a good idea for the beneficiaries to get together and decide whether they will contest this person's claim, or simply make this person an settlement offer with all the beneficiaries taking less.

If you want to do the latter, then you will need to see an estates law solicitor to advise and the other beneficiaries how strong the claimant's case is, and whether he would be likely to be successful if he takes this to Court.

Should you have any other questions, please let me know.

If you're satisfied with the results of your question, then I'll ask you to please provide positive feedback so that I will get credit for the time spent on your question. Your question can continue even after you leave positive feedback, so if you have any follow up questions please don't be afraid to ask.
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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I want to protect the amount I have been provided but I also want to support the claimants claim, since I think that it is ethically correct to do so.


 


The estate is small ($850,000). Three dependent stepsons have been provided about $140,000 each. One dependent stepson has been excluded due to a family quarrel. According to the provisions of the will, the remainder is to be divided among the stepgrandchildren (who were never dependents). There is enough money in the estate for an equal amount to be provided to the remaining stepson, but this will be at the expense of the remaining amount available for distribution. Since specific amounts are nominated for the stepchildren but are not nominated for distribution to the stepgrandchildren, is it likely that the provision will be taken from the remainder, which is what I would like to see.


If I do nothing except be prepared to attend court as you suggest, is this the likely outcome or is it likely or possible that my specific amount will be reduced. If the latter, is there anything I can do to protect this?

It is a strong possibility your amount will be reduced. As for protecting it, the best you can do is have a solicitor draft an affidavit for you to sign which you file with the Court.

Please don't forget to leave positive feedback so that I will get credit for the time spent on your question.
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