Family Law Titles
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(Court of Protection, Senior Judge Lush, 26 March 2012)
An application was made to authorise the execution of a new will in respect of the 90-year-old man who suffered from mixed dementia and lived in a residential care home. His estate, which comprised 12 rental properties, was worth approximately £3.5m.
He had four children and although the eldest child grew up in a children's home he had been in contact with his father for over 40 years and had assisted him in managing the rental properties. He claimed to have spent £150,000 on that enterprise on reliance that his father would create a will in his favour.
The man had no relationship with his youngest child who was born following the parents' divorce and the relationship with the other two daughters was strained.
In accordance with the provision of the Mental Capacity Act 2005, the overwhelming weight of the evidence was that if the man had capacity he would choose to do nothing at all and would die intestate. A will that had been executed in 2008 had been done so in circumstances which raised issues of undue influence having regard to the man's capacity and vulnerability at the time.
It was in the man's best interests for a will to be executed in order to appoint professional independent executors. Making provision for the three oldest children but refusing the youngest child's application.
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