Taking a Closer Look at the Family Provision Claim: Understanding the Nuanced Legalities

Establishing a living will and final testament allows an individual to be the sole decider on a wide range of important topics, including the following:

  • Who gains control of assets and possessions following death
  • Who assumes guardianship of any surviving children
  • Who is left out of the will and disinherited from any compensation
  • Who is authorised as the executor of the will
  • Include estate plans and nuanced demands within the document
  • Any changes to the will prior to death

But as you might imagine, there is a myriad of familial and sentimental aspects that come into play after a person passes away, which is why it’s so important to understand the ins and outs of Australia’s Family Provision Claim, especially if you’ve been left out of a person’s will and feel as though you are entitled to compensation.

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Important Facts and Figures

Before you can file a family provision claim in NSW, it’s in your best interests to learn more about the specifics of this legal codification and how it can affect your financial and personal well-being:

  • The Family Provision Act was first passed over 30 years ago in 1982, but it was changed and altered in 2009 with the Succession Amendment Bill.
  • The recent changes allow individuals to file a will contestation regardless of whether there is an authorised will in place or whether the contester was even mentioned in the actual document.
  • Former spouses, de facto partners, direct relatives, financial dependents, household members, and close friends now have the ability to file a Family Provision Claim to obtain adequate compensation.
  • Another change involves the submission timeline: You have to file the claim within 12 months of that person’s death; the legal constraint used to be 18 months.
  • Due to these modifications and statutory changes, will contestations and Family Provision Claims have risen by more than 50% since 2009.
  • In-court and out-of-court settlements in NSW were worth over $40 million in 2011, and this figure has been rising steadily over the past half-decade.

How Do I File a Family Provision Claim?

Due to the numerous complexities and legalities involved in the process, you’ll have to hire a reputable attorney to handle your Family Provision Claim, especially if your quality of life has drastically declined following the death of someone you relied upon. In this regard, you’ll want to find a knowledgeable, time-tested team of will and probate specialists to handle the proceedings:

  • Over three decades of experience in the will and probate niche.
  • Widespread network of regional agencies, with more than 40 dedicated in-house staffers.
  • No-win, no-fee guarantee to help mitigate financial strain during the process.
  • Fixed fee arrangements available depending on the potential size of the settlement.
  • Fee-free, no-obligation case assessments, with a complimentary 90-day service trial.

Robust portfolio of past cases and the corresponding outcomes (usually located in the “Case Studies” tab on the law firm’s website).