Information Regarding Inheritance Law

Disclaimer: This content has been prepared by third party lawyers, not by ARAG nor by the Insurer. It is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter and is not intended to constitute legal advice, and you should not rely on this information as a substitute for obtaining your own legal advice. If any of the below issues apply to you, then you should obtain legal advice about your specific circumstances. ARAG and the Insurer disclaim any liability for damages howsoever arising out of or in connection with the use and/or reference to any of this content.

Published on 01.07.2020.

My loved one has passed away. I am listed as a beneficiary in their will. If the will is not dated, will it still be valid?

There is no requirement that a valid will must bear a date. The will, providing that it satisfies other necessary preconditions, will be considered valid and you will remain a beneficiary.

Can I challenge a will if I am unhappy with it?

Yes, you can. In NSW, for example, you must lodge a claim in court within 12 months of the death. In rare circumstances, you may be able to contest the will out of this time period.

There are various reasons why people challenge wills. You may feel that the will is unfair or inequitable. If you are a dependent of the deceased, and you feel that the will does not cover your needs, this may be another basis.

Courts usually seek to avoid interfering with a deceased person’s will. However, in these circumstances, they may adjust it.

I feel that my parent was not in the right mental state when they created their will. Do I have a right to contest it?

If the deceased did not have the capacity to produce their will, it might be invalid. If you have concerns, you should contact a legal expert to explore avenues to contest the will in court.

Please be aware that if the will contains a ‘no contest’ clause, a failed attempt to challenge it may result in you receiving nothing.

What happens if someone does not make a will?

This means that they will leave an intestacy. Their assets will be distributed according to the intestacy laws of their state, and they may not have the ability to direct their assets to any specific person.

This depends on several factors, such as whether the person has a partner, children or other living relatives.

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