What are you looking for?

6 December 2021 | Comment | Article by Roman Kubiak TEP

Are grandchildren entitled to bring a claim for reasonable financial provision under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 (the “Inheritance Act”)?

In the case of Delaforte v Flood [2021] WTLR 499, the Central London County Court ruled that a claimant grandchild was entitled to reasonable financial provision from her late grandmother’s estate.

Grandchildren are not typically eligible to bring a claim as a category of applicant under Section 1(1) of the Inheritance Act. However, if they can show that they are a person that was being financially maintained by the deceased, either financially or wholly, that individual can bring a claim under Section 1(1)(e) of the Inheritance Act.

In this case, the deceased suffered from vascular dementia, amongst other medical conditions, and required round the clock care. The claimant, being the deceased’s granddaughter, had given up her own career as a ballet dancer, for over seven years, to care fulltime for the deceased on a live-in basis. Despite receiving carer’s and attendance allowance, as well as top up payments, the granddaughter received below market pay.

In 2016, the deceased passed away leaving an estate valued at around £630,000. Unfortunately, no provision was made for the granddaughter in the deceased’s will. In fact, the deceased’s children, being the granddaughter’s mother and uncle, were named as beneficiaries in the estate.

The granddaughter made a claim under Section 1(1)(e) of the Inheritance Act as a person who had been maintained by the deceased in the two years prior to her death. After considering the background details, the Court ruled that the granddaughter was entitled to reasonable financial provision and an award was made based on the sum of money that she would require to establish her own dance business as she had desired.

The Court also awarded her provision for her maintenance requirements for the three years following the deceased’s death. In making the award, the Court was cautious to emphasise that this award did not account for the compassion and selflessness shown by the claimant in forsaking her career to care for her grandmother.

Although the case does not alter the position in relation to a grandchild’s entitlement to bring a claim for reasonable financial provision under the Inheritance Act, it is an example of the approach the Court will take in considering the individual circumstances of a claimant and the extent to which they contributed to the needs of the deceased.

The Court was clear that if the claimant had not given up her career to care for the deceased, it is likely she would never have left hospital or would have been moved into a care home, which would have costed her a considerable amount of money. It was clear that these were circumstances in which an individual had provided care and/or sacrificed for the care of the deceased.

In circumstances where a grandparent has passed away, and supported you financially, it is worth considering whether you can make a claim for reasonable financial provision from their estate under the Inheritance Act.

Author bio

Roman Kubiak TEP


Roman Kubiak is a Partner and Head of the market leading Private Wealth Disputes team.

He advises across the whole spectrum of private wealth disputes, with a particular focus on high value, complex and cross-border disputes including: trust disputes, breach of trust claims and applications to remove trustees; will disputes, particularly those with an international element; claims under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975; and claims for equitable relief under proprietary estoppel, constructive trusts and resulting trusts.

Disclaimer: The information on the Hugh James website is for general information only and reflects the position at the date of publication. It does not constitute legal advice and should not be treated as such. If you would like to ensure the commentary reflects current legislation, case law or best practice, please contact the blog author.


Next steps

We’re here to get things moving. Drop a message to one of our experts and we’ll get straight back to you.

Call us: 033 3016 2222

Message us