Remote hearing “did not stop witness admitting he had lied” – Litigation Futures

Posted March 30th, 2021 in coronavirus, deceit, news, probate, remote hearings, wills, witnesses by tracey

‘Holding a trial over the validity of a will remotely may have helped a witness admit that the contents of his affidavit were not true, the High Court has suggested.’

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Litigation Futures, 30th March 2021

Source: www.litigationfutures.com

Contentious Wills & Probate Part III – Parklane Plowden Chambers

Posted February 19th, 2021 in chambers articles, forfeiture, news, probate, wills by sally

‘Last year there were two reported decisions in respect of the forfeiture rule. These are worth mention given the rarity of reported cases in this area.’

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Parklane Plowden Chambers, 17th February 2021

Source: www.parklaneplowden.co.uk

Contentious Wills & Probate Case Law Roundup 2020: Part II – Parklane Plowden Chambers

Posted February 19th, 2021 in chambers articles, news, probate, wills by sally

‘Two validity cases in particular stood out last year and both turned on whether or not a testator suffered from “insane delusions” rendering their wills invalid. There are fewer reported cases giving guidance on this strand of the Banks v Goodfellow test (most cases I deal with revolve around old age psychiatry) so these recent cases are worth some scrutiny.’

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Parklane Plowden Chambers, 12th February 2021

Source: www.parklaneplowden.co.uk

Court refuses to approve tainted fiduciary decision making (Schumacher v Clarke) – New Square Chambers

Posted February 18th, 2021 in charities, conflict of interest, fiduciary duty, news, trusts, wills by sally

‘The court was faced with a category 2 and 3 Public Trustee v Cooper application principally for the approval of a momentous decision. The court was initially asked to approve the entirety of a settlement reached between four trustees split into two camps but later asked to approve only the dispositive elements of the settlement. The settlement unusually resolved disputes between the trustees rather than between trustees and beneficiaries or third parties. The court was concerned with mutual allegations of inappropriate action as fiduciaries and the failure of both sides to manage conflicts of interest in arriving at a settlement. After stressing that such factors could impair the decision reached and which the court was asked to approve, the court refused its approval of part of the settlement. Written by James Saunders, barrister, at New Square Chambers.’

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New Square Chambers, 11th February 2021

Source: www.newsquarechambers.co.uk

Contentious Wills & Probate Case Law Roundup 2020: Part I – Parklane Plowden Chambers

Posted February 18th, 2021 in fees, financial provision, news, repossession, wills by sally

‘In Part I of our three-part series of key caselaw updates in contentious wills, Anna Metcalfe discusses the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975.’

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Parklane Plowden Chambers, 8th February 2021

Source: www.parklaneplowden.co.uk

Witnessing Wills During a Pandemic: “You’re on mute” – No. 5 Chambers

Posted January 22nd, 2021 in chambers articles, coronavirus, news, telecommunications, wills, witnesses by sally

‘The Wills Act 1837 (Electronic Communications) (Amendment)(Coronavirus) Order 2020 (SI 2020 No 952) means that it is now possible to witness a will via a video call. These temporary changes are much needed to allow those who want to make or update a will during the Covid-19 pandemic to do so safely and legally.’

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No. 5 Chambers, 21st January 2021

Source: www.no5.com

Remote Witnessing of Wills During the COVID-19 Pandemic – Parklane Plowden

Posted December 7th, 2020 in chambers articles, coronavirus, fraud, news, probate, undue influence, wills by sally

‘There has unsurprisingly been an uprise in the number of people making wills since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, though social distancing measures have created problems for people in terms of complying with the witnessing requirements of section 9 of the Wills Act 1837 (“the Wills Act”).’

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Parklane Plowden, 10th November 2020

Source: www.parklaneplowden.co.uk

Non-lawyers banned from law firms in misconduct blizzard – Legal Futures

Posted December 1st, 2020 in disciplinary procedures, forgery, law firms, legal executives, news, solicitors, wills by sally

‘Six non-lawyers have been banned from working for law firms for a range of offences, from faking signatures and misusing season ticket loans to fabricating a client’s will to name themselves as a beneficiary.’

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Legal Futures, 1st December 2020

Source: www.legalfutures.co.uk

Court: “No need for City lawyer” in professional executor tussle – Legal Futures

Posted November 4th, 2020 in budgets, costs, executors, fees, news, probate, wills by tracey

‘The High Court has ruled that there was no need for a more expensive City lawyer to be appointed a professional executor in preference to one from the Home Counties in a straightforward probate.’

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Legal Futures, 4th November 2020

Source: www.legalfutures.co.uk

Revisiting interim payments in IPFDA 1975 claims: Weisz v Weisz [2019] EWHC 3101 (Fam) – Hardwicke Chambers

Posted October 29th, 2020 in bereavement, financial provision, news, widows, wills by sally

‘Charlotte John investigates interim payments under the Inheritance (Provision for Family & Dependants) Act.’

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Hardwicke Chambers, 26th October 2020

Source: hardwicke.co.uk

Inheritance delays causing financial hardship for the bereaved – The Independent

Posted October 7th, 2020 in bereavement, coronavirus, delay, executors, families, news, probate, wills by tracey

‘With probate applications now taking three times longer to approve, more than 8,000 estates remain unclaimed.’

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The Independent, 6th October 2020

Source: www.independent.co.uk

How cohabiting couples should protect their finances – Family Law

‘Historically, cohabitation agreements, sometimes known as “no-Nups”, were frowned upon as they were seen to encourage sexual relations outside of marriage. Thankfully, times have moved on and that’s no longer the case. The general view is that such agreements are enforceable if they deal with cohabitees’ property and affairs, and provided they are entered into freely with full information. Often, disputes between cohabitees following separation relate to what was or wasn’t intended, for example, in relation to the property in which they live. Having a clear record of the cohabitees’ intentions in a cohabitation agreement can avoid expensive disputes about those issues.’

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Family Law, 30th September 2020

Source: www.familylaw.co.uk

Grounds for Setting Aside a Will: Undue Influence – Pallant Chambers

Posted July 30th, 2020 in news, setting aside, undue influence, wills by sally

‘The loss of a loved one is already an incredibly difficult and emotional time. Sometimes the situation is made worse by the discovery of suspicious circumstances surrounding the making of the will. This series of posts will examine some of the ways in which a will can be challenged.’

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Pallant Chambers, 22nd July 2020

Source: www.pallantchambers.co.uk

Video witnessing of wills to be made legal in England and Wales during pandemic – The Guardian

Posted July 27th, 2020 in coronavirus, news, video recordings, wills by sally

‘Video witnessing of wills is to be made legal in England and Wales to make it easier for people to record their final wishes during the coronavirus pandemic.’

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The Guardian, 25th July 2020

Source: www.theguardian.com

Beware of issuing ‘hopeless’ Inheritance claims in expectation of settlement – St Ives Chambers

‘Ever since the well-known case of Ilott v The Blue Cross and others [2017] where an adult child was awarded £50,000 from her mother’s estate (notwithstanding their estrangement), practitioners are regularly approached by adult children in order to claim from an estranged relative’s inheritance. There is often reference to a “10% rule” based on what was awarded in Ilott.’

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St Ives Chambers, 3rd July 2020

Source: www.stiveschambers.co.uk

Why the rise in contentious probate cases is set to continue – Legal Futures

Posted July 7th, 2020 in fees, law firms, news, probate, wills by sally

‘There is no doubt that contentious probate work is growing. We do not like paying more than a couple of hundred pounds for a will, but then are seemingly happy to spend thousands taking our relatives to court, and the two do not sit happily together.’

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Legal Futures, 6th July 2020

Source: www.legalfutures.co.uk

Why victims can sometimes inherit from their abusers- even if they kill them – OUP Blog

‘It is a basic rule of English law that a person who kills someone should not inherit from their victim. The justification behind the rule, known as the forfeiture rule, is that a person should not benefit from their crimes and therefore forfeits entitlement. Many other jurisdictions have the same basic rule for fundamental reasons of public policy, including the need to avoid incentivising homicide. Importantly, however, Parliament passed the Forfeiture Act 1982 to give courts in England and Wales discretion to modify the application of the rule in certain cases, so that some people could inherit from those they had killed after all. Such modification is also possible in some other jurisdictions: It allows judges to consider individual circumstances where the blanket application of a forfeiture rule would cause injustice.’

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OUP Blog, 3rd July 2020

Source: blog.oup.com

Special Dispensations: coronavirus puts informal wills back on the agenda – Hardwicke Chambers

Posted June 12th, 2020 in chambers articles, coronavirus, news, probate, wills by sally

‘The exigencies of the coronavirus pandemic, which has led to a high demand for will writing services, and the challenges of meeting that demand whilst observing social distancing, have brought the issue of will reform into sharp focus. At a time when technology provides a solution to so many of the problems that we currently face, the insistence on wet ink and the physical presence of witnesses for the making of a valid will appears increasingly archaic. Citing the dignity and peace of mind that putting one’s affairs in order brings and the urgent need people have to make provision for those they may leave behind, Gina Miller and Baroness Helena Kennedy QC have this month called on the government to extend the provisions relating to privileged (wartime) wills to the current situation so as to allow purely oral testamentary statements to be admitted to probate.’

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Hardwicke Chambers, 3rd June 2020

Source: hardwicke.co.uk

I do declare! Could a test case on remote witnessing wills be brought before death? – Hardwick Chambers

Posted June 10th, 2020 in chambers articles, coronavirus, executors, news, wills by sally

‘In this post, I address the question of whether or not a test case on remote witnessing could be brought now by a testator who has attempted to make a will using videoconferencing technology.’

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Hardwicke Chambers, 1st June 2020

Source: hardwicke.co.uk

Success fees in 1975 Act claims: SH v NH [2020] EWHC 1134 – New Square Chambers

Posted June 10th, 2020 in chambers articles, costs, families, fees, news, solicitors, wills by sally

‘The Family Division has determined that a claimant’s success fee should be awarded to her as part of her award under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975.’

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New Square Chambers, June 2020

Source: www.newsquarechambers.co.uk