Leave to swear death for helicopter crash

The applicant's husband was the pilot of a helicopter that crashed into waters off Cape Tribulation.  The evidence suggested that he died in the accident but his body had not been found.  Leave was granted to swear death.  There was a discussion of whether such leave can be granted even though no probate application had yet been … Continue reading Leave to swear death for helicopter crash

Delusions, death and solemn form

Interesting case handed down yesterday by Lindsay J in the NSW Supreme Court discussing delusions and their effect on testamentary capacity.   There is a good discussion about the law on delusions, as well as the difference between solemn form and common form grants. Read Re Sue [2016] NSWSC 721 here.

Ineffective codicil

This morning Martin J dismissed an application for probate of an informal codicil under s18 of the Succession Act 1981 (Qld). The deceased left a duly executed will, prepared by a solicitor.  There was a later handwritten document, which was signed by her and dated, but not witnessed.  It was stored with the will at a solicitor's office. … Continue reading Ineffective codicil

New costs rule

On 19 December 2014, a new 700A was inserted into the Uniform Civil Procedure Rules regarding in estate and trust matters.  The new rule is set out below. Of course, these matters were always able to be taken into account in the court's wide discretion on costs, so it will be interesting to see what practical effect … Continue reading New costs rule

Security for costs ordered in de facto appeal

The deceased died intestate.  The respondent alleged he was her de facto spouse.  A finding was made by the trial judge that he was not.  He appealed that decision. Security for costs of the appeal was sought, and ordered in the sum of $10,000. Read Burton v Spencer here.

Application to join solicitors to solemn form proceeding dismissed with costs

Last Friday the Qld Supreme Court dismissed an application to join de Groots (as well as the individual solicitor) as defendants to a solemn form proceeding. The proceedings involve a disputed will - the testator's capacity is in issue. The plaintiffs are the disappointed beneficiaries under the penultimate will. The application was opposed on a … Continue reading Application to join solicitors to solemn form proceeding dismissed with costs

Husband and wife sign wrong mirror wills – rectification or informal will application both appropriate

Mirror wills were prepared for a husband and wife. Both wills were duly executed. By mistake, they each signed the will prepared for the other. Probate was sought of the husband's will under the informal will provisions of the NSW Act (their equivalent of Qld’s s18). Held – That effect may be given to testamentary … Continue reading Husband and wife sign wrong mirror wills – rectification or informal will application both appropriate

Offensive and scandalous conditions in wills

The Supreme Court has an inherent power to remove from a will, language that is considered to be "scandalous, offensive, defamatory or blasphemous". In Re Welsh, the deceased’s Will stated he had made no provision for his wife as their marriage had broken down, they lived separately and that “she is a compulsive and addicted gambler.”  The … Continue reading Offensive and scandalous conditions in wills