Case study: De Facto Deceased Estate

Our client received the whole of her de facto father’s deceased estate, rather than it being paid to the State.
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Client Story

Deceased Estate Matter. Our client’s “father” died without leaving a Will. Our client was raised by the deceased because her real parents were not capable of raising her. The deceased wasn’t actually related to our client by blood, and she was never adopted by the deceased. At law, there was no recognisable relationship between them, despite 50 years of love, care and affection.

The Issues

The Succession Act doesn’t contain any section which gives legal recognition to the relationship between the de facto father where there has not been any adoption and where the two are not related by blood. 

The result is that in the absence of any recognised category of relationship, the whole of the estate is to be paid to the State of New South Wales.

What We Did

Under the Succession Act, the NSW Attorney General has the discretion to waive the entitlement the State has to the deceased’s estate. We made an application on behalf of our client to the NSW Attorney General to exercise their discretion for such waiver in favour of our client.

The Outcome

On the basis of our application, the NSW Attorney General waived their entitlement to the deceased’s estate, and our client received the whole of the deceased’s estate.

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