This article was published on April 21st, 2016
In July last year there was lots of media coverage after a British Appeal Court overturned a mothers Will and sided in favour of her estranged daughter.The disputed Will involves a £500,000 estate that a woman left to three animal charities she had no previous relationship with. The mother, Melita Jackson, had deliberately left her estranged daughter out of her Will ensuring she was left with nothing when she died.
The legal dispute has lasted a decade and was thought to have been concluded last year when a British Appeal Court awarded the daughter £164,000 of the estate on the grounds that she had not been given ‘reasonable financial provision’.
The Lady Justice Arden awarded the daughter a portion of the state because the daughter was living on very basic subsistence which equated to an annual household income of under £7,000 and state benefits of around £13,000. She said that the daughters living costs… ‘are at such a basic level that they outweigh the importance that would normally be attached to the fact that the appellant is an adult child who has been living independently for so many years’.
The charities named in the Will were very disappointed with this ground breaking ruling and appealed to the Supreme Court who gave the charities, including Blue Cross, the RSPCA and the RSPB, permission to appeal.
The Supreme Court will look at whether the appeal court was right make the award under the 1975 Inheritance Act and whether it was right to structure an award to allowed the daughter to still be entitled to state benefits.
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