In a recent interview with Citywealth, trust and estate disputes partner Gareth Ledsham discusses the rise of lifetime gift litigation. He explains some of the circumstances under which lifetime gifts may be challenged, such as where the donor may have been unduly influenced into making the gift, or where they may have lacked capacity. He notes that there is no specific time limit for challenging a lifetime gift, and explains some of the defences that may be available to claimants if a challenge is brought a long time after the gift is made.
“Often these challenges will arise after the donor’s death or after the onset of incapacity – when the donor is not able to speak for themselves. Generally speaking, lifetime gifts may be challenged in various circumstances. It might be alleged that the legal requirements for a gift were not met (e.g., that a gift was not intended but rather a loan was) or it might be argued that the donor did not have the necessary mental capacity to understand they were making a gift, or that they were unduly influenced into making it.”
The full article is available to read online and by subscription.
Gareth is a partner in the trust and estate disputes team. He regularly acts for both claimants and defendants on a range of contentious trust and probate disputes. As an expert in mental capacity law and Court of Protection matters, Gareth acts for deputies, attorneys and other interested parties on the removal of attorneys/deputies, disputed lifetime gifts, statutory wills and financial abuse claims amongst others.