‘Can my de facto partner’s kids claim from my estate when I die?’

Oct 25, 2019
Don’t let stepchildren turn your relationship and estate into a money-making machine. Source: Getty.

Q: Can my de facto partner’s kids claim from my estate when I die? We have been together for more than 20 years but he has three kids and I have one. I know he has divided his will into four, leaving his assets to his three kids and me. However, I had more before we met so there is more to leave and while I am happy to leave my partner’s children a bit each, I would hate them to contest my will when I die and want more.

A: In Queensland, the short answer is – yes, they can contest your will, but.

The ‘but’ is that your stepchildren cannot contest your will if your de facto relationship came to an end before you died. Put another way, legally, they are no longer your stepchildren for the purpose of challenging your will if the relationship between you and their father ended before you went to heaven.

This sometimes means that stepchildren are keen to ensure their parent’s relationship with a rich stepparent lasts as long as possible. If it lasts until your last breath, they can challenge your will. Be careful, however, to check on the law in your state or territory as it could be different to the law in Queensland.

There are additional considerations when it comes to inheritance and de facto partnerships that you may want to give some thought though, which you can read more about here.

If you have a question for Starts at 60’s money experts, email it to [email protected].

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Are you worried your stepchildren may have claim to your estate? How have you addressed the issue?

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