The two daughters of Real Estate millionaire Maurice Laboz have recently became millionaires by inheritance subject to a bizarre list of conditions that must be met prior to the pair sharing a wealth totalling $27 million.
For example, the daughters won’t receive $13 million each, until they reach the age of 35. Furthermore, the eldest, Marlena, 21, will get $687,000 if she marries so long as her husband agrees to not go after the money.
Marlena will further receive $1 million if she graduates “from an accredited university” and must write 100 words or less as to what she intends on doing with the money.
Whilst the daughters enjoy the benefits of being millionaires, Maurice Laboz’ wife, Ewa, 58, were left nothing, possibly because the two were both in the midst of a divorce.
This case shows similarities to the case of Olivia Mead, the estranged daughter of West Australian billionaire Michael Wright who successfully challenged her father’s estate – it is therefore important to know in what circumstances can a Will be challenged.
Each Australian State and Territory has its own laws relating to will dispute litigation, but in a broad sense, there are similarities. The Will Maker can generally decide what to do with his or her assets but the law realises that there are often very good reasons as to why a person should be contesting a Will. A party may challenge a will for the following reasons:
- The execution of the Will was not carried out properly
- Family members are not adequately provided for or left out of the Will entirely
- The Mental Capacity of the Will Maker was insufficient at the time of execution of the Will
- The Will Maker was unduly influenced when writing the Will
The two cases mentioned above relate to family members being left out of the Will. Commonly, any family members or people who share a close personal relationships (applicant need not be related to the deceased) who will face financial hardship as a result of being left out of the will may make an application to contest the Will.
It is essential to note that an application to Dispute a Will must commence within six months of probate being granted. Most disputed Wills are settled out of court, via mediation.