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Sister Contesting My Father's Public Trustee Will

Discussion in 'Wills and Estate Planning Law Forum' started by Marcus, 21 May 2014.

  1. Marcus

    Marcus Member

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    My father made his will through the public trustee. 8 years ago, he left me a sum of money. The rest of his estate has been left to his wife. They also have a 2 year old son whom they adopted.
    My sister who had not spoken to my dad in 14 years as she told him he would never see his grandchildren has now decided she wants to contest the will. She has 8 kids and does not work. I have no idea how strong this makes her case and I'm wondering if I need to get a wills and estate planning lawyer to see that my fathers last wishes are carried out?

    Any information would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. winston wolf

    winston wolf Well-Known Member

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    Who is the executor? The public trustee or you?
    In what state did he die?
    "ago he left me a sum of money" how long ago? Do you mean he gave you some money?
    What is a rough guess of the size of the estate?

    Yes she has the legal right to challenge the will. Her chances of success depend on a lot of thing.
     
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  3. Marcus

    Marcus Member

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    The public trustee is the executor
    I haven't received any money as of yet but in the will the first thing it says is that he leaves his son ( me) 30k and the rest is to go to his wife. He died in Qld & I estimate the size of his estate to be around 650k with 500 k being his house and the remainder being in his super.
    My understanding was as his wife and he have a 2 year old son and they were both dependant on my father that she and my little brother are entitled to pretty much everything as he has to be cared for until he is 18
    Thanks for sharing your knowledge
     
  4. Marcus

    Marcus Member

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    What other things would effect her chances? One of her 8 kids has special needs but she also has a colourful past
    The reason for the family split is quite nasty with a threat being made against my late fathers life
    He worked hard for what he had which is why I don't want his last wishes disrespected
     
  5. winston wolf

    winston wolf Well-Known Member

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    Public trustee as executor will pretty much take care of defending the will.
    One important fact is was the house owned souly by you father or did his wife own the house with him as tenants in common or as joint tenant?

    The super is not strictly part of the estate but is taken into account.

    One thing to remember is that the circumstance of your fathers and you sisters estrangement hold very little weight in these things.
    If it were to go to court the judge would weigh your stepmothers and sons need versus your sisters need.
    Mostly you fathers responsibility is to his fife and infant child.

    Did you father mention in his will why he didn't leave you sister anything? It helps if he did.

    With any luck your sister will take some "go away" money say $70K - $100K, if not a challenge could easily eat up $100K-$150K and then she would probably get something. Having the Public trustee as executor will make things a bit harder as they tend to not be very flexible or innovative in resolving these things. But there is nothing you can do about that, so bets to accept it.

    Let me know if i missed anything.

    BTW nobody gets anything until this as sorted out.
     
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  6. Marcus

    Marcus Member

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    Thank you for your help Mr Wolf ,
    My fathers wife hadn't worked for the last couple of years because she was looking after my step brother. In the several years prior to that she worked and contributed to the payment of the house and bills but her pay went into my fathers account . I'm not sure if that would strengthen her case or not.
     
  7. winston wolf

    winston wolf Well-Known Member

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    This is only reverent as to what her assets are.
    All of this stuff goes into the mix but the where the need is seen to be by the judge is the primary factor.
    Do you have a copy of the will? If not ask for one.
     

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