The forfeiture rule prevents a person who has unlawfully killed another from inheriting from their victim or acquiring another financial benefit from the death. It expresses community’s extreme disapproval of homicide and the fundamental principle that crime should not pay.
The VLRC forfeiture report, tabled in the Victorian Parliament on 14 October 2014, concluded that the rule should continue to apply in all cases of murder and most other cases. However, some reform was necessary, because in a small number of cases, those involving significantly reduced moral culpability, the rule does not operate fairly.
The Commission recommended the introduction of a new Forfeiture Act to clarify when the rule applies and how it affects the distribution of the deceased person’s estate. We also suggested the Supreme Court should be able to modify the effect of the rule in individual cases, except murder.
Access the report from the links below.