Three years after Lynda Bellingham’s death, it appears the battle over her estate between her third husband, Michael Pattemore, and her two sons Michael and Robbie Peluso, may be drawing to a bitter close.

Disputes lawyer, Gemma Smith comments: 

"Having agreed a settlement with their step father, Michael and Robbie suggest that they will receive a ‘derisory sum’ of less than £50,000 each from Lynda’s estate, which is reported to be in the region of £5 million. Meanwhile, it is reported that Mr Pattemore has enjoyed lavish holidays and cosmetic treatment. The family rift was sparked by the fact Lynda’s will left everything to Mr Pattemore, her third husband, and ‘inconceivably’, nothing to her two sons, with whom it appeared she had a very close relationship with. As such, is seems her sons may have brought a claim under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 as the will did not leave reasonable financial provision for them.

If nothing else, this dispute shows the importance of ensuring you have a properly drafted will which properly reflects your wishes, and you have taken proper advice about ‘cutting’ any family members out of your will.

However, if you would like more advice on challenging a will or making a claim under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975, please don't hesitate to speak to us."