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State of play

Jennifer Ridgway and Karen Bayley analyse recent cases featuring post-nuptial agreements, disputed estates and vulnerable clients

22 June 2015

Dellal v Dellal

This case concerned an application for strike out and/or summary judgment, against a widow's claim under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975.

Jack Dellal died in 2012 age 89, effectively leaving his entire estate to his second wife, Ruanne Dellal, under his will. One of Britain's most successful property tycoons, Mr Dellal's worth was estimated at £445m in the 2012 Sunday Times rich list. On death, however, his disclosed assets amounted to only £15.4m.

Mrs Dellal described this as an 'absurd presentation of the true scale of his personal wealth at the date of his death'. She argued that, for his estate to have shrunk so significantly, he must have secretly given most of it away (in trusts, bank accounts and gifts, to his children from other relationships) wit...

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