Reconciliation after Divorce and Unintended Consequences

Although it doesn’t happen very often some couples do get back together even many years after they have divorced. It may surprise you to learn that when this happens there can be some unexpected legal consequences.

In the case of Chekov v Fryer and Fryer 2015 which was recently decided in the High Court two sons tried to challenge a claim brought by their step mother against their late father’s estate under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975. The circumstances were a little unusual as the dad and stepmother here had been married had then divorced and then got back together some time after their divorce. The stepmother claimed against the father’s estate on the basis that she had been cohabiting with the father however the sons claimed that the final order made in the divorce proceedings which said that neither party could claim against the other’s estate should apply. The High Court decided that in fact the step mother was entitled to make a claim.

If the father had stopped to consider the position then he would have been able to draw up a Will which could have provided for both his partner and his sons which could well have avoided costly litigation and provided certainty for the family involved.

If you would like to make a will to provide for your loved ones please contact Samantha Downs on 01162628596 or at samantha.downs@dodds-solicitors.co.uk

If a close relative or partner has died without making financial provision you may be able to make a claim in certain circumstances but there are very strict time limits so if you would like further advice please contact Sarah Spence on 01162628596 or at sarah.spence@dodds-solicitors.co.uk