Can a parent disinherit an adult child?
- Where an adult child is excluded from her parent’s estate, she can apply under the Wills Variation Act to share in the estate.
- The excluded child has the onus to prove that her parent did not have valid and rational reasons for disinheriting the child.
We represented a son who was the sole beneficiary named in his mother’s will. His sister challenged the will. In her will, the mother stated that the reasons she was not providing for her daughter were that she had raised the daughter’s child as her own and that the daughter had been estranged from her for decades.
The Judge said that the mother’s reasons were valid because the facts were true. Secondly, the reasons were rational in that there was a logical connection between the mother’s reasons and the disinheritance.
The Court decided that the will would stand and our client would receive all of his mother’s estate.
Read the case: Berryere v. Berryere