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  • Writer's pictureMelanie Palmer

Understanding Eligibility for Family Provision Claims in New South Wales


In New South Wales, the law provides for family provision claims to be made by eligible persons who believe they have been unfairly left out of a deceased person's will or inadequately provided for. These provisions are designed to ensure that dependents and close family members are adequately provided for after someone passes away. However, not everyone can make a family provision claim. Eligibility criteria must be met, and understanding who qualifies is crucial for anyone considering such a claim.

Who is an Eligible Person for Family Provision Claim?

The Succession Act 2006 (NSW) outlines the categories of eligible persons who can make a family provision claim. These include:

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Understanding Eligibility for Family Provision Claims in NSW
  1. Spouse or Partner: This category includes spouses, de facto partners, and same-sex partners who were in a domestic relationship with the deceased at the time of their death.

  2. Children: This includes biological children, adopted children, stepchildren, and any child who was treated as a member of the deceased's family.

  3. Former Spouse or Partner: In some cases, a former spouse or partner may also be eligible to make a claim, particularly if they were receiving maintenance from the deceased at the time of death.

  4. Dependants: This category extends beyond immediate family members and can include any person who was wholly or partly dependent on the deceased for their maintenance or support.

  5. Others: In certain circumstances, anyone who was living in a close personal relationship with the deceased at the time of their death may also be eligible to make a claim. This could include close friends or carers who can demonstrate a genuine dependency or expectation of provision.

Factors Considered in Eligibility for Family Provision Claim

While the above categories outline who may be eligible to make a family provision claim, it's essential to understand that eligibility alone does not guarantee success. When determining whether to grant a claim, the court will consider various factors, including:

  • The nature and extent of the relationship between the applicant and the deceased.

  • The financial circumstances of the applicant, including their need for provision.

  • Any contributions made by the applicant to the welfare of the deceased or their family.

  • The size of the deceased's estate and the competing claims of other beneficiaries.

Seeking Legal Advice for Family Provision Claim

Navigating the complexities of family provision claims can be challenging, and it's crucial to seek legal advice if you believe you may be eligible to make a claim or if you are an executor facing a claim against the estate. A qualified solicitor experienced in estate litigation can provide invaluable guidance, helping you understand your rights and obligations under the law.


Family provision claims play a vital role in ensuring that dependants and close family members are adequately provided for after someone passes away. Understanding who is eligible to make such a claim is the first step in navigating this process. If you believe you may have a valid claim or if you are an executor defending a claim against the estate, seeking legal advice is essential to protect your interests and ensure a fair outcome for all parties involved.


By Melanie Palmer

Ph: 02 4869 1392

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