Disinherited Daughter Awarded £30k from Estranged Father’s Will

Jan Samuel

In a recent judgment handed down by His Honour Judge Saffman at Leeds County Court, a daughter has been awarded £30,000 from her estranged father’s estate, which was worth £240,000.  Elena made the claim against Stanley’s estate, under The Inheritance (provision for family and dependents) Act 1975.

Stanley had written a letter, which accompanied his will, saying that all three of his children were explicitly disinherited, and in his will he left the whole of his estate to a friend.  However, two of his children made 1975 Act claims. 

Elena made a claim on the basis that she had made several attempts to be reconciled with her father prior to his death.  She also submitted that she wanted to finish a veterinary nurse course.  As a result, she was awarded £30,000.  Her brother Mark who was unable to work through ill health was awarded £22,000.

This decision is very important. The Supreme Court decision in Ilott v The Blue Cross and Others had suggested that estranged children would find it almost impossible to bring a claim against a parents’ estate, from which they had been disinherited. However, Elena’s wish to complete a veterinary nurse course was found to fall within the definition of “maintenance”, a requirement it seems of a successful claim. 

If you are involved in a dispute about a will, or if you have been disinherited and were left nothing in a will, we should be able to help. At Samuels Solicitors, based in Devon, we have been assisting clients in resolving disputes about wills and inheritance for many years. 

In many cases we are able to act for clients on the basis of a Conditional (no win no fee) Agreement, and even where this is not possible, we are usually able to agree to a flexible funding arrangement with clients to assist with the payment of legal fees.

Contact us today to see how we can help.