Estate disputes and elder abuse

Australian lawyers experienced in estate disputes and cases of elder abuse.

Represented clients defending and claiming on estates worth close to $50 million.

Cross-border disputes
Setting up business in Australia
Ongoing operations

Australian lawyers for estate disputes and elder abuse

Putting your interests first

Do you suspect a family member or an older client in Australia might be a victim of mistreatment? Perhaps you believe you have not received your rightful inheritance from an estate in Australia? Or has someone made a claim on an estate you are administering in Australia?

If that’s you, you need Australian lawyers experienced in estate disputes and elder abuse. We have extensive experience in:

  • contesting wills
  • making claims for family provision on behalf of clients who believe they should have received an inheritance
  • acting for executors defending against claims made on the estate
  • reversing situations where an older person has been taken advantage of financially

In many of these cases, our clients have been overseas. That is because Fiona is a German-speaking lawyer who has acted extensively for clients from Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Norway, the USA and other jurisdictions.

Defending fair play in difficult circumstances

Estate disputes and elder abuse in Australia

Estate disputes and elder-abuse cases are delicate. They often involve grief, families in disagreement, and clients whose infirmity has made them victims, even though they see themselves as fiercely independent and capable.

In these cases, you need a lawyer who can navigate the human elements while being firm in pursuit of the client’s interest.

Fast and firm legal action can make all the difference in the outcome of matters of estate law and cases of elder abuse. The clock in these matters might be running down fast, so you want a lawyer with the experience to take the right steps quickly. Speed is of the essence because it is easier and cheaper to stop a transaction than to reverse it.

An unfortunate dark side of Australia’s long-running boom in house prices is the increased incentive to target older homeowners, even those under guardianship orders. We have extensive experience in unwinding suspect transactions and challenging wills.

Particular actions taken at the right time can create an environment in which it becomes hard for anyone acting unethically to further their plans.

Our boutique environment give our clients in Australia, Germany, Austria, Italy, Norway, the USA and elsewhere access to the advice of a senior litigation lawyer without the client having to fund the overheads of a global firm. We keep a close eye on the legal costs to ensure as much as the estate as possible is preserved for the beneficiaries.

Who we work with

In the case of estate disputes, we act on behalf of executors or parties with a claim on the estate.  We represent clients in both small estates worth less than $250,000 and large estates worth over $10 million.  In the case of elder abuse, we act for the victim if they have capacity, and we liaise with family and financial advisors. Alternatively, it may be necessary to appoint a “tutor” to act on behalf of a person without capacity.

Contested wills

Contested wills

Defending estates

Defending estates

Family provision claims

Family provision claims

Undue influence

Undue influence

Unconscionable conduct

Unconscionable conduct

Financial abuse

Financial abuse

Key Contact

Fiona Henderson

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Resources and insights

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Recent testimonials

My mother inherited my father’s estate, but due to some cognitive decline, my brother who had moved in with her, began selling off her inheritance to buy properties in his name.

When my mother moved from Australia to Canada and into aged care, we needed the money to pay for her care. We could tell Fiona was genuinely interested in our situation. Thanks to her and the barrister she recommended, the court found there had been undue influence and unconscionable conduct.

Fiona and the barrister were dedicated, prepared and effective, which is not something we saw on the other side. Over the course of the matter, which ran for years, Fiona masterfully managed people behind the scenes and presented options we would never have known existed. Even now, the matter continues and Fiona can recall and use small details from nine years ago. She definitely sets a high bar.

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Miles Fisher-Pollard,

I came to Fiona because my original solicitor couldn’t explain anything. He wouldn’t answer the phone or ring back. Then I found Fiona. She’s so approachable and good at simplifying the legal process.

And she cares. Sometimes I’ve got frustrated with the whole process and been a little aggressive, but Fiona’s always been great with me. She’s helped me heaps, she’s patient and she understands it’s hard.

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Steven Marcou

We have never had to work with a lawyer, even in Germany, so when our son was injured in Australia, we had no idea what to expect from a lawyer. Fortunately, Fiona speaks German so there was no language barrier.

The situation was hard enough to understand in German. Fiona’s communication was always very quick, simple to understand and unbureaucratic. Also, almost as importantly, we found it remarkable that Fiona’s commitment to getting the best result for our son often went far beyond what we expected. She worked with great dedication and empathy to achieve the best possible outcome for our son.

If we hadn’t had a lawyer who spoke German and who worked as hard as Fiona did for us, it could have meant our son didn’t get the financial support that he will need for the rest of his life.

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Christoph and Petra Basch

Fiona proved to be a reliable and very competent lawyer. I could see she really believed what had happened to Mum and me was wrong, and her advice was always honest and realistic about our chances.

When this got to court, she was 100 percent present for us. Within the first few hours, the court had chucked out quite a lot of what the other side presented. On our side, everything she and our barrister presented was accepted by the court.

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Annabelle Quince

Looking for an Australian lawyer
experienced in litigation and cross-border matters?

If you’re looking for experienced Australian lawyers to represent and protect your interests in Australia,
please let us know how we can help.

+61 2 9173 9894
Free consultation