Does Testamentary Freedom really exist?

This is such an interesting case study shared by a practitioner in this field. I am dealing with a number of claims under the 1975 Act at present, made by adult children. As this case shows, they are are inherently unpredictable. Cases where adult children have long been estranged from their parents really do make me question whether there really is such a thing as testamentary freedom.

Contentious Probate Claims – a working case example Ally Tow, a Senior Associate at Boyes Turner explores some of the challenges and obstacles that litigators dealing with contentious probate claims face by looking at an example of a case she was involved in a few years ago where the estranged daughter of a testator made a claim under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 ('the 1975 Act”) following his death.

In the claim, I acted for the residuary beneficiaries of the estate who were two registered charities. The Estate By his last will, the testator had gifted the sum of £5,000.00 to his adopted daughter. He had also made some other specific monetary gifts but the will provided that the residuary of his estate be divided equally between the two charities. The estate had a gross value of about £360,000.00 with the net estate to be shared equally between the charities after payment of inheritance tax and the specific gifts. The charities’ share of the estate was therefore valued at a little under £150,000.00 each (excluding costs).