Succession Laws

Project Status:

Tabled in parliament

Start Date:

02/03/2012

Tabled in Parliament Date:

25/10/2013

Reference

Victoria’s succession laws involve the transfer of wealth from one generation to the next. Laws about wills, executors and intestacy can be complex.

Changing family structures, longer life spans and changes to the legal system had made the existing laws unwieldy. The Attorney-General, in March 2012, asked the Commission to review the laws of succession, including the laws about:

  • Wills
  • Family Provision
  • Intestacy
  • Executors
  • Debts
  • Small Estates.

We published consultation papers on each of those topics. After a call for responses, we received 46 submissions. We also consulted widely and delivered  the VLRC Succession report , which was tabled in Parliament on 15 October 2013. It contains 78 recommendations about wills, executors and intestacy, and other matters, intended to:

  • reduce the costs of administering small estates, making it easier and cheaper to administer an estate when a person dies.
  • make the law clearer about which family members can challenge a will under family provision laws.
  • make the commissions and costs charged by executors more transparent, and provide new avenues for resolving disputes.
  • provide better public information to help will-makers, administrators and executors of wills.
  • bring Victoria in line with other states in relation to various succession laws.

You can download the report, submissions and consultation papers from the links below.

The Victorian Parliament went on to implement many of the VLRC’s recommendations in the Justice Legislation Amendment (Succession and Surrogacy) Act 2014.  This amended the key piece of Victorian legislation, the Administration and Probate Act 1958 (Vic) in relation to:

  • family provision claims
  • the rules for the payment of debts of an estate
  • the administration of small estates, and
  • amending the court authorised wills scheme in the Wills Act 1997.

In addition, in 2017 the Administration and Probate and Other Acts Amendment (Succession and Related Matters) Act 2017 (Vic) adopted recommendations made in the VLRC’s report to regulate the role of legal practitioners as executors, and the fees and commission they can charge, and other recommendations on intestacy and ademption.

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Project Stage

  • Terms of reference received
  • Submissions and consultations
  • Submissions closed
  • Final Report
  • Tabled in parliament

Publications

Publication Date

15/10/2013

The Commission’s report on its review of succession laws was tabled in the Victorian Parliament on 15 October 2013. We made recommendations about Wills, Family Provision, Intestacy, Executors, Debts and Small Estates.
Publication Date

15/10/2013

The Commission’s report on its review of succession laws was tabled in the Victorian Parliament on 15 October 2013. We made recommendations about Wills, Family Provision, Intestacy, Executors, Debts and Small Estates. Read more
Publication Date

15/10/2013

The Commission’s report on its review of succession laws was tabled in the Victorian Parliament on 15 October 2013. We made recommendations about Wills, Family Provision, Intestacy, Executors, Debts and Small Estates. Read more
Publication Date

01/04/2013

The Commission received the following submissions for its review of Succession Laws. Read more
Publication Date

01/10/2012

Publication Date

01/10/2012

Publication Date

01/10/2012

Publication Date

01/10/2012