• Last Will & Testament of Diana, Princess of Wales

    I DIANA PRINCESS OF WALES of Kensington Palace London W8 HEREBY REVOKE all former Wills and testamentary dispositions made by me AND DECLARE this to be my last Will which I make this First day Of June One thousand nine hundred and ninety three 1 I APPOINT my mother THE HONOURABLE MRS FRANCES RUTH SHAND KYDD ...


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  • Our Legal Fees & Services

    At GMH Legal we believe that client relationships matter more than time sheets which is why we offer a range of alternative fee arrangements to best suit your needs. Our focus is on client service and establishing mutually rewarding relationships with our clients. We think that billing by the hour does not ...


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  • Will says daughter’s share is worth half her brothers

    The ACT Supreme Court has overturned a will created on the basis that “one boy is equal to two girls” and therefore sons should get double the inheritance of daughters. Fatama Omari challenged the legitimacy of the will of her mother, Canberra woman Mariem Omari, saying she had not known what she was doing when ...


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  • General Principles of Wills

    A will is a written document in which you state how you want your property distributed after you die. A person who makes a will is called a "testator". It also allows you to nominate an executor, who is the person responsible for making sure your wishes are met. What Happens If I Die Without A Will? If you di...


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  • Elements of a Testamentary Trust

    Testamentary trusts are created in a will by a testator who bequeaths his or her property for the benefit of others called the beneficiaries.  Testamentary trusts can either be express or non-express, but if a will is properly created, a testator’s intentions can be inferred from the terms of the will. By creati...


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  • The Traps of a Granny Flat Accommodation

    When the elderly decide to live in a ‘granny flat’ near their children, they sometimes fail to take account of the risks of such a move.  They also sometimes fail to consider the unforeseen outcomes of personal relationships and personal challenges which ill health, financial difficulty and ultimately death th...


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Contact Us

Suite 309 – 310, Level 3
13A Montgomery Street

Ground Floor
54 Martin Place

Email: solicitors@gmhlegal.com
Phone: (02) 9587 0458
Facsimile: (02) 9587 2936

Court Procedure

GMH Legal specialises in all forms of Will disputes including; contesting, challenging and defending Wills. Our lawyers work exclusively in this area of law, each and every day.

The law surrounding Will disputes is often complex, with exceptions to almost every rule and no two cases the same. Will dispute law also differs significantly from state to state adding another level of complexity to each case.
Time Limits

For claims of Family Provision under the Succession Act there is a general time limit of 12 months from the date of death. The Court has the power to determine the date of death if it is uncertain. It also has the power to extend the limitation period if sufficient cause is shown.


Costs in cases involving disputed Wills are a matter for the discretion of the Court.
It is often true that the legal costs of both parties in a case concerning a contested Will are paid from the estate of the deceased. While that may be true in many cases, the Court also has the power to order either party to be responsible for their own legal costs or those of the other party. This will most often take place in two circumstances:

  • Where the Court believes that the claim that has been brought is unmeritorious (should not have been brought); and
  • Where there has been an offer to settle by one party, that offer was not excepted by the other party and the result determined by the Court is in terms that are similar or more favourable to the party making the offer. In other words, where a party has prolonged the litigation by not accepting an offer that the Court thinks they should have accepted, that party may be ordered to pay the costs of the other party from the time of the offer onwards.

Making an application

An application to the Court for Family Provision or to Contest a Will is normally made by way of a Summons issued in the Supreme Court.

A Summons is a document setting out what orders you would like the Court to make if they decided the case in your favour.

Affidavits and Reports

Traditionally the Court has required the evidence in Family Provision and Contested Will cases be introduced by way of Affidavit.

An Affidavit is a sworn statement of the evidence a person is able to give in relation to the case in cases that required an expert to give evidence they would prepare a report which would be annexed to an Affidavit sworn by them.

Final Hearing

Most matters concerning Family Provision or Contested Will are resolved by settlement before ever reaching a final hearing.
Cases that have not been able to be resolved and require a determination by the Court are listed before a Judge or an Associate Judge of the Supreme Court.


From the time of handing down of the Judgment, a party wishing to contest the decision has 28 days to lodge a Notice of Appeal.

The Appeal cannot be lodged simply because a party disagrees with the decision but rather it needs to show where the Judge has made an error in applying the law to the facts of the case. Often there can be many points of alleged error in a Notice of Appeal

Call the experienced team at GMH Legal to assist you in your matter. A free consultation with GMH Legal is an opportunity to gain deep insights into your legal situation and all of your options.

Why Choose GMH Legal?

  • Over 60 years of combined legal experience
  • Outstanding track record with a winning approach
  • First appointment is always free
  • Meet our team now.

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