The High Court has ordered shares in land to be split between siblings after questions were raised regarding whether the land should have given solely to the son under his father’s unsigned Will.

The most recent version of the Will stated that only his son was to be given ownership of the land, but this was unenforceable as the Will hadn’t been signed by the deceased.

The father had drafted his final Will shortly before his death. There was evidence to suggest that he had intended signing the Will, but he had never taken practical steps towards doing so.

The previous Will stated that ownership of the land will be divided equally among the siblings. This Will had been signed and executed correctly.

The Court had to determine whether the father intended for his most recent Will to be considered valid, even though it was unsigned.

The Court determined that although the deceased liked the idea of giving his son sole ownership of the land, he never gave effect to any action enforcing that idea. The Court was not convinced that the deceased’s intention was to sign the Will, as there was a possibility that he had good reason not to.

As a result, the Court ordered that the original Will was to be enforced and that the land should be split between all of the siblings.

The father could have provided certainty as to his wishes by signing the new Will, but he failed to do so. The Court was left to decide what he intended, rather than the father making that clear.

If there is confusion surrounding how to execute a valid Will or how to enforce a Will, it is wise to seek advice from a professional with expertise in the area.


Leading law firms committed to helping clients cost-effectively will have a range of fixed-price Initial Consultations to suit most people’s needs in quickly learning what their options are.  At Rainey Collins we have an experienced team who can answer your questions and put you on the right track.

Shaun Cousins