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SA Deceased Estate - Entitlement If Will Can't Be Found?

Discussion in 'Family Law Forum' started by Layla, 17 April 2015.

  1. Layla

    Layla Member

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    My mother in law has just lost her partner of 10 years, 2 months ago. Although they both had their own residences, he stayed at her house majority of the time. On his passing, she handed over his possessions to his adult children who organised his funeral with consultation from her. He made a will on his phone and apparently has another in his safe which at this stage has not been found. We worry that his adult children will not honour his wishes and look after her if a will is not found . They never had anything in joint names, and she is very naive with others behaviours and intentions. Is their an intention to claim etc on the deceased estate that she can look at?
     
  2. Sophea

    Sophea Well-Known Member

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    Hi Layla,

    If a will was made on his phone - it is doubtful that it will be valid. There are strict requirements for the making of Wills including being executed and witnessed by a qualified party. See here: Vaild Wills

    If the one kept in his safe is not found and there is no valid will by which to distribute his estate, then his estate will be distributed in accordance with the laws of intestacy. Where the deceased has a spouse and children, the general rule is that: (provided the estate is worth over $100,000 the deceased's spouse or domestic partner will be entitled to $100 000, and half of the balance of the estate, as well as the personal belongings of the deceased while the children of the deceased are only entitled to the balance of the estate in equal shares. You can read more about it here: Distribution of an intestate estate

    If the children did abscond with his assets leaving her high and dry, or the will did not leave her anything then she could apply to the court for a family provision order. However this is a rather expensive and time consuming process and would require the engagement of lawyers.
     
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