This is the sixth in our series of articles on the uncertainties of death.
Myth – “My new partner’s children can’t challenge my Will…. Right?”
There are many misconceptions in relation to the classes of person who are eligible to “challenge” the proposed distribution of your estate.
One common misconception is that it is only “blood” relatives that can pursue a claim.
This is certainly not the case, and the categories of eligible applicants include your step-children as well as your “defacto” step-children.
The court takes into account a number of factors when considering whether a challenge will succeed, including:
- The level of need of the challenger;
- The size of the estate;
- The nature of the relationship between the challenger and the deceased; and
- Other competing claims on the estate.
There are strategies that can be put in place to assist in minimising the effect of any challenge.
A carefully structured estate plan can ensure only the people you intend to benefit do so.