Can you claim ‘no win, no fee’ legal costs in Inheritance Act disputes?

An adult child with complex mental health issues, who was estranged from her parents, has succeeded in a claim against her late Father’s estate for reasonable financial provision. The judge acknowledged that may in part be due to her mental health issues.

The estate was valued at £554,000 and the daughter was awarded £138,000 (approximately 25% of the estate). This was for on-going care and to cover shortfall in income against outgoings, rental deposit, new white goods, and replacement of a dilapidated car.

Interestingly, part of the award was to cover part of the uplift of the Conditional Fee Agreement (sometimes called no win, no fee) that the daughter was liable to pay her Solicitors for succeeding in the case. This is the third case where this issue has been considered recently.

The Judge declined to make an award to buy a new house for the daughter because of the mother’s on-going care needs, and the fact that the daughter was estranged from her parents. The parents had only partially contributed to her living costs for four years.

It is important to account for fact that the mother was disbarred from the proceedings due to failure to comply with previous court orders. She was in a care home, but had some substantial assets to meet future care needs, (over £400,000). Whilst the Judge was careful to protect her position, it’s important to remember that this judgement was made with no argument in favour of the mother.

Inheritance act claims are unfortunately becoming more commonplace. If you feel that you are entitled to a sum from an estate, or would like to discuss your options when pursuing a claim, contact Verisona Law today on 02392 98 1000 or email connect@verisonalaw.com   

 


“If it had not been for the EPA I would have had real problems even discussing my mother’s affairs with banks, investment companies, government departments and care providers, much less paying her bills from her account.

“Being able to supply copies of the EPA to the various parties meant they would speak to me and act on my instructions. Without it I would have had to pursue a long, complicated and expensive legal process – at a very difficult time personally.

“I would absolutely recommend planning ahead and making an LPA. It could make a huge difference to your loved ones.”

Paul

"We have now received all of the information for the deputyship. We are delighted with the outcome. I would like to take the opportunity to say thank you for your work and support. It was a difficult thing for us due to the circumstances, but you made it easy and that really helped.

Thank you also for the settlement of the account, we are very grateful. I have friends who have Autistic children and adults I will recommend you in the future".

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