Dispute over millionaireâ€™s foreign will
Having homes in more than one country can easily pave the way towards creating ambiguity and dispute after your death, if your wills are not prepared fully and accurately.
It is always recommended to seek expert will writing advice if you choose to live for at least part of the year outside of the UK, as the probate process can become very complicated and a contentious probate dispute can arise as a result.
In this instance, millionaire businessman Piero Curati lived principally in the UK and so had a will written here. However, he also had previously had one prepared in Italy, where he was born and so the question arose whether his first will had in fact been revoked by the one made in the UK.
This ambiguity led to a dispute between the late Mr Curati’s niece and nephew, and his sister. In the first will, the niece and nephew were set to inherit the entire assets of the will, worth just under £2m after tax. However, in the UK will, his sister was set to become sole beneficiary.
The argument now rests with the High Court, who will decide which country was deemed to be the deceased’s main residence and from that, who stands to inherit his estate.