Man Fails To Pay Out Inheritance And Is Declared Bankrupt

In June 2016, Gary Bryson Watt was declared bankrupt in Wellington, New Zealand. But this was after he had spent his dead partner’s fortune on luxury items rather than paying it out to his step-children.

Those step-children, James Roberts-Gooch and Alexandra Gooch were too young to inherit when their mother, Anne Roberts, died of cancer in 2012. They were 16 and 14 at the time. She didn’t leave a will, but due to New Zealand probate laws the children were entitled to two thirds of the estate.

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Watt was given the task of being the administrator of the estate – an estate which included large pay outs from life insurance companies, as well as substantial savings. Instead of dividing the estate up and putting the children’s money into trustfor them when they were older, he spent it on things like cruise, motorbikes, and cars.

Although the family court did order Watt to pay the children their money – around $300,000, he didn’t do it. So James took matters into his own hands and applied for Watt to be made bankrupt. This would mean that the house he lived in – which had belong to Anne – would be sold, and the proceeds could go to James and Alexandra. Even so, after legal fees there might not be much left. However, he felt it was his only choice, and it was what he had to do. 

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