Monday, December 3, 2012
In Western Australia (WA), a recent change now allows stepchildren to challenge the wills of their step-paretns. These changes are some of the most significant steps in decades and brings WA in line with all other Australian jurisdictions. Before this change, no matter how dependent a stepchild was on the deceased, they had no standing in the law. Now, stepchildren can challenge wills based on claims that there was failure to provide adequate or proper provision for a stepchild who was being, or entitled to be, entirely or prartly maintained by the dead step-parent. Stepchildren can also bring claims based on a setp-parent receiving property from the estate of a birth parent on the understanding that at least a substantial part would be left to the child when the surviving step-parent died.
See Amanda Banks, Stepchildren Get Will Rights, thewest.com.au, Dec. 3, 2012.
Special thanks to Brian Cohan (Attorney at Law, Law Offices of Brian J. Cohan, P.C.) for bringing this article to my attention.