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Inheritance Dispute Case Study

Northern Beaches Lawyers recently successfully obtained a significant inheritance for our clients by negotiation without recourse to a Court case or litigation in circumstances where the clients had previously been advised by another lawyer that they would be unsuccessful. The daughter of our client approached Northern Beaches Lawyers concerned that her mother, herself and her siblings would be denied an inheritance which was promised to the husband, who died some years earlier, and sought our advice.

At the time of his death, the clients had sought advice from another solicitor in relation to their rights under the inheritance laws. They were advised that the litigation would be very expensive, uncertain, and that success would be unlikely. Not surprisingly, they chose not to pursue the case and let the matter lapse.

Some years later, our advice was sought and from a proper examination of the facts and the legal principles it was possible to reconstruct that a testamentary promise was made and present evidence of the family agreement between the husband and his brother, and that the wife of the deceased and his children were to share in his half of the estate.

We obtained senior counsel’s advice and commenced negotiations with the executors of the estate of the uncle and were able to negotiate terms of settlement recorded in a Deed, which resulted in each of our three clients receiving over $250,000 each as settlement. This was achieved without recourse to litigation and at little cost to our clients.

It was fortunate that the adult children persuaded their mother to seek our expert opinion, as the time limits and the difficulties in securing evidence would have meant that a further delay would have prevented our clients securing their inheritance.

Estate litigation is a complex specialised area of the law that Northern Beaches Lawyers has specialised in for over 20 years both at our city office and at the Northern Beaches.

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