When making your will, it is important to consider potential risks to your estate. This includes the risk of someone challenging your will.
Even if your will is validly made, a person can bring a claim for further provision from your estate. s57 of the Succession Act 2006 (NSW) defines who can bring such a claim. These people are referred to as ‘eligible persons’. Eligible persons include spouses (whether married or de facto), children, former spouses and other financial dependants if they are your grandchildren or have ever lived with you.
A solicitor assisting to prepare your will should screen for potential claims on your estate and be able to advise on the steps that should be taken to minimise any risks identified. While it is not possible to prevent all claims from arising, considering the potential for them and having discussions with your family about your plans can significantly reduce the risk of dissatisfaction and litigation following your death.
If the risk of a claim is high, your solicitor should be able to advise you on the steps you can take to ensure your executors are prepared to respond to the claim and about how to best protect your assets for your chosen beneficiaries.