*The contents in this blog relates to legislation in New South Wales.

Sharron Bryan is one of our clients who has brought a Family Provision claim against the estate of her late father, Keith Alexander Beveridge.

The estate is a significant size, perhaps ten million dollars with additional estate, known in New South Wales as “notional estate” of somewhere between fifty and sixty million dollars consisting mainly of properties held by a discretionary family trust.

Sharron’s claim for provision was listed for hearing before the Court on 8 November 2021 for four days. It was adjourned on the application of the first defendant because the first defendant had to have operative treatment at short notice and advised her solicitor that she could not give evidence.

Sharron’s primary claim is for the cost of medical treatment in Australia and overseas to treat multiple myeloma.

Sharron expected that her claim would be heard on 8 November 2021 and that all going well she would receive an award of provision from her father’s estate.

Her father left his entire estate to her mother and her mother has resisted paying for Sharron’s medical treatment.

Sharron needs money to cover the next stage of her treatment, which is treatment by way of a series of infusions of a drug called Daratumumab that is efficacious in significantly slowing the course of her disease and which is a medication not available except if paid for privately.

After hearing argument over the period of a week the Duty Judge made an award of interim provision in a sum of just over $220,000, the majority of which (about $160,000) is to pay for the medication.

The award is a significant one, and is also unusual.

Very few people receive an award of interim provision. An award of interim provision is made pursuant to Section 62 of the Succession Act.

Section 62 (1) is in the following form:

62. Interim family provision orders and orders restraining distribution of the estate

(cf FPA 9 (5) and (6))

(1) The Court may make an interim family provision order before it has fully considered an application for a family provision order if it is of the opinion that no less provision than that proposed in the interim order would be made in favour of the eligible person concerned in the final order.

An urgent need must be specified and the claimant must show that he or she will no less than the award of interim provision at a final hearing.

We were able, during the course of evidence and argument to demonstrate both of those matters.

You can read the full judgment here.