When it comes to inheritance, questions and problems often arise within the family. The larger the sum, the more likely it is that friction and grudges will appear. Some of these cases end up in court, others manage to be resolved peacefully. Who is entitled to the inheritance of a missing person? Can relatives claim the inheritance even if the person has given specific instructions? An elderly woman left an important legacy for an animal welfare organization and deliberately excluded her heirs from her will.
image credit: Not the actual photo – Ravi Patel/Unsplash
Millionaire Herta Veronika Whittal died in 2016 at the age of 93. The woman was of Austrian origin – the incident took place in the Land of Carinthia – but she was a British citizen. This is not an unimportant detail: Austrian law provides, in the event of the death of a person, that a minimum share goes to the descendants. The same is not true of English law and since the woman was a British citizen and the estate was managed by two Isle of Man investment funds, she was able to bequeath the entire amount, i.e. 4.3 million euros, to a local association that fights for animal rights and protection, the Tierschutzverein .
image credit: Not the actual photo – Prashant Gupta/Unsplash
The case caused a stir and was examined by the Supreme Court in Vienna, which validated the woman’s will made in England. The president of the animal welfare association Tara Geltner said the inheritance will be used to buy an ambulance for transporting animals and to finance a project for the rehabilitation and reintegration of problem dogs: the wishes of the woman have therefore been granted.
At this point, you may be wondering: but is it possible that relatives are not entitled to any inheritance? Have there been any problems in the family in the past that caused the woman to exclude the children and grandchildren from the inheritance and deprive them of the large sum of money? Some of the woman’s grandchildren, who live abroad, even managed to get a small part of the inheritance. Nothing, however, is owed to them by the English investment funds, which hold the very large part of this sum.
source used: ansa.it