What are the relevant factors for a Family Provision Application?
The determination of a Family Provision Application is a two-stage process. The first stage involves a determination by the court as to whether the applicant has been left without proper support. This involves an examination of the applicant’s financial position in the context of the size of the estate. This means in a small estate, the applicant’s financial need must be great. However, in a large estate, the need may only need to be moderate.
Once the applicant passes this threshold question, the court has a wide discretion to make an award of further and better provision from the estate. The court considers a number of matters including the following:
- the size and nature of the estate;
- the applicant’s financial position;
- the applicant’s health and the health of their family;
- the applicant’s family situation;
- the deceased’s maintenance and support of the applicant;
- the applicant’s relationship with the deceased;
- the value and location of the deceased’s estate;
- competing or other claims on the estate;
- any grounds for disentitlement or reduction of provision; and
- any contributions made by the applicant to the building up of the deceased’s estate.