Aristocrat's Will challenged for Lack of Capacity


In August 2006, Mark Birley, the founder of an aristocratic night spot in London, passed away leaving an amassed fortune of £105 million.

Shortly before his death, Mark Birley rewrote his Will following a dispute with his son, Robin Birley, over the management of the renowned nightclub ‘Annabel’s’. The amended Will left the majority of his fortune to his daughter India-Jane on trust for his grandchild, leaving his son with a mere £1 million in comparison.

Prior to the amended Will, Mark Birley’s wealth was to be divided equally. As a result legal action was initiated by Robin Birley on the basis that his father was not of sound mind when he changed his Will.

Robin was unsuccessful in his attempt to freeze the assets of the Trust held by his sister who subsequently pursued the case claiming that her father was in full possession of his faculties when the Will was amended.

The legal battle between the siblings has continued for 16 months until now. A private hearing conducted in the High Court has allowed the parties to end the bitter feud and escalating legal fees to reach a settlement just in time for the festive period.

Robin Birley has been offered a third of his father’s estate, equating to approximately £35 million.

Simpson Millar can assist you in the preparation and drafting of a Will. We also provide professional advice when making your Will as to the best options available to suit your personal circumstances.

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