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A Warning for Charities and Testators, Ilott Vs Mitson

Summary: It used to be the case that where an adult child of a deceased lived independently and was not in financial need, they would be unable to make a successful claim for reasonable financial provision where they had been left out of a Will. This position has been challenged by the ruling in Ilott v Mitson [2011]. In this case, the Court of Appeal held that the adult daughter of the deceased was to receive a share of her estate, despite a clear letter of wishes left with the deceased’s Will explaining why she had excluded her daughter.

The case also provides valuable guidance for individuals who are considering leaving a legacy to charity as the court examined the testator’s connection to her chosen charitable beneficiaries in this case. Please speak to Richard Monkcom, Head of Druces’ Private Client team for further information

Relevant to: Individuals considering excluding an adult child from their Will or leaving a legacy to charity.