The long-running case involving Heather Ilott and a number of animal charities was heard in the highest court in the land this week. Hot on the heels of last week's Brexit hearing, the Supreme Court judges had to wrestle with the concepts of testamentary freedom, lifestyle choices and the significance (or otherwise) of a testator's decision to disinherit a child.
We were sat in the hearing and it was fascinating to hear the various arguments that were put forward. This is undoubtedly an important case, but I'm not expecting it to open the floodgates to large numbers of claims by adult children. Indeed, the Court of Appeal decision hasn't, in my experience, had that effect. I think in the end the decision will probably only impact a fairly narrow set of circumstances!
Seven Supreme Court justices heard the bitterly disputed case of Heather Ilott, who was awarded around one-third of her late mother’s £486,000 estate by a lower court despite instructions given by her mother, Melita Jackson, who left the money to three animal charities.The charities, which include The Blue Cross, the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds and the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, appealed against the decision, arguing that Mrs Illott should receive only £50,000.