The Family Provision Act of 1969 is the set of laws that govern how a person is to provide for his or her dependents after his or her death. This law generally does not have to be invoked, especially if the deceased did not leave a will and the estate is divided by the state. However, there are some cases in which the will appears to favour some dependents over others. If you believe that a loved one has not left you adequate provisions or has left you completely out of his or her will unfairly, you may be able to make a family provision claim under the Family Provision Act.
Who Can Make a Family Provision Claim?
Anyone who believes he or she did not receive a fair share of the deceased’s estate can make a claim under the Family Provision Act. However, the claimant must have had a relationship with the deceased. The recognised relationships under the Act include the deceased person’s partner or someone who the deceased had a domestic relationship with for a minimum of two continuous years, his or her children or stepchildren, his or her grandchildren, and his or her parents.
There are some caveats to this list that specifically outline whether stepchildren, grandchildren, and parents can make a claim. There are also specific laws, namely the Domestic Relationships Act of 1994, which define what is considered a recognisable domestic relationship.
When Should You Make a Claim?
There are specific limits on how much time you have to make a claim under the Family Provision Act NSW. In general, your claim must be made within six months from the date that the will was administered. However, it is possible to extend that period if the court believes that there were extenuating circumstances. Though if the estate has been distributed fully and as legally required, the Act states that no extension is allowed.
While six months may seem like a good amount of time, it’s important that you contact a legal representative who is an expert in this area of the law as soon as possible if you plan on making a claim. The paperwork that needs to be completed does take time. It’s also possible that your loved one’s property will be sold or claimed by others if you wait too long. By the time you make your claim, it’s possible that there will be nothing left for you to receive.
Why Should You Make a Claim?
If you believe that you have been left out of a loved one’s will for petty reasons or that the executor of the will has been influenced into acting in a manner that is not in accordance with the deceased’s wishes, you should certainly make a claim against this unfairness. You do, however, have to realise that making a claim may upset your family members and may cause a rift. While that’s no reason to be denied what is rightfully yours, it does often happen in these cases