David and Paul Taylor have won their case to overturn their stepmother's Will on the basis that she made it suffering the undue influence of her brother. The Court heard that Marlene Taylor changed her Will following the intervention of her brother, who went onto 'wear her down' with persistent demands that she leave her Estate to his children.
Judge Mark Cawson QC heard how Mrs Taylor's brother, Bruce Peskin, bombarded his sister following financial difficulties he experienced after the Icelandic banking crisis. The Judge said "Not only did his own children stand to benefit under the 2008 Will, but he also had his own financial difficulties - particularly following the collapse of the Icelandic Bank. He looked to his children's inheritance as a way of achieving some form of financial security in the future for himself and his wife."
The Judge concluded that Mrs Taylor had been persuaded by her brother at an emotional and vulnerable time after the death of her husband. He said "There is cogent evidence that the effect of his persistence and pressure was to wear her down - as shown by the conversation she had with a friend, when she burst into tears and said she couldn't cope with anything anymore and didn't know what to do about her Will."
Mrs Taylor's previous Will had left her entire Estate to her two stepsons, with whom she was very close following her long-standing marriage to their father Brian, which commenced in 1966. She apparently described them as 'her boys'.
When a family member or someone close to you dies, it can be an emotionally difficult time made more difficult where there is a dispute about the deceased person's Estate. If you or someone you know feels a need for advice about your options in this situation, call Chris Fielding on 01603 723786 for a confidential discussion about your particular circumstances.
For more information on Contentious probate disputes issues please follow this link to the Litigation and dispute resolution page.