Whether a person dies with a legally valid will or their estate is distributed under the law of intestacy, the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 (“the 1975 Act”) makes provision for the Court to alter how a deceased’s estate is to be distributed, if it is found that the Will or rules under the law of intestacy fail to make ‘reasonable financial provision’ for an applicant.
There are a variety of potential applicants, including the deceased’s spouse or civil partner, a cohabitee, a child of the deceased (including adult child), a person treated as child of the deceased or any person being maintained by the deceased.
Depending on which category the applicant falls into, will depend on which standard will apply to the test of whether ‘reasonable financial provision’ has been made for the applicant. If a spouse or civil partner is applying, the question of ‘reasonable financial provision’ here is based on what is reasonable for them to receive in all the circumstances.
In all other cases the question of ‘reasonable financial provision’ is a question of what would be reasonable in all the circumstances for their ‘maintenance’. The key question arising here of course being what is ‘maintenance’?
If you believe you have a potential claim under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 you can contact the specialist team at Whitehead Monckton on 01622 69800 or firstname.lastname@example.org for further information about their services.