Recommendations to make succession laws clearer

16 Oct 2013

The Victorian Law Reform Commission has published the final report of its review of Victorian succession laws.  It was tabled in the Victorian Parliament on 15 October 2013

The report contains 78 recommendations to reform the laws that affect what happens to the assets of Victorians after they die.

The recommendations include:

  • making the law clearer about which family members can challenge how they have been provided for under a will
  • reducing the costs of administering small estates, making it easier and cheaper to administer an estate when a person dies
  • limiting the range of next of kin who can inherit when a person dies without a will, and strengthening the position of the deceased person’s partner
  • making the commissions and costs charged by executors more transparent
  • better guidelines to detect and prevent undue influence on will-makers
  • more public information in different community languages to help will-makers, administrators and executors of wills
  • bringing Victoria in line with other states in relation to various succession laws.

The report is the result of 18 months’ work. Forty-six submissions were received from individuals and organisations.

The Victorian Law Reform Commission consulted widely with the community, including seniors’ groups, carers’ groups, community legal centres, people from Indigenous and culturally diverse backgrounds, farmers, regional and rural organisations.

Legal practitioners, State Trustees, financial institutions and superannuation companies were among those who made formal submissions.

The report and recommendations can be accessed at the Commission's website.

Chair of the Victorian Law Reform Commission, The Hon. Philip Cummins is available for interview about the importance of wills to the community.



Nick Gadd, communications manager, Victorian Law Reform Commission.

Tel: (03) 8608 7824 / 0425 862 119 or email

Date published: 
16 Oct 2013

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