Cecil Parkinson’s lovechild sues estate

It has been reported that the lovechild of former Tory minister Cecil Parkinson is suing her father’s estate after she was left out of his Will. Flora was born over 30 years ago following a high-profile affair with millionaire Lord Parkinson.

Cecil Parkinson died last year and has allegedly left his entire estate to his wife and their three daughters. It has been reported that Flora suffers from Asperger’s syndrome and has severe disabilities following an operation to remove a brain tumour.

Flora’s mother is now seeking financial provision for her daughter.

As a child of Lord Parkinson, Flora is eligible to make a claim against his estate under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependents) Act 1975. For her to succeed with her claim, Flora will have to show that her father’s estate does not make reasonable financial provision for her. ‘Reasonable financial provision’ means such provision as it would be reasonable in all the circumstance of the case for Flora to receive for her maintenance. Given that Flora was receiving a quarterly payment of £5,000 before her father’s death, Flora is likely to be able to show that she had reasonable expectations of her father matching her living costs. The most contentious issue in Flora’s case is likely to be about the type/level of the award the Court should make.

Factors the Court must consider

When deciding whether to make an order under the Inheritance Act, the Court must determine whether the Will of the deceased or the laws of Intestacy, make reasonable financial provision for the applicant. Then, only if such provision has not been made, the Court must decide whether, and in what manner, it should exercise its powers to make one of the above orders.

The specific factors that the court must by law consider when deciding these questions are as follows:

  1. the financial resources and financial needs which the applicant has or is likely to have in the foreseeable future
  2. the financial resources and financial needs which any other applicant for an order under the Inheritance Act from the estate of the deceased has, or is likely to have, in the foreseeable future
  3. the financial resources and financial needs which any beneficiary of the estate of the deceased has, or is likely to have, in the foreseeable future
  4. any obligations and responsibilities which the deceased had towards any applicant for an order, or towards any beneficiary of his estate
  5. the size and nature of the net estate of the deceased
  6. any physical or mental disability of any applicant or any beneficiary of the estate
  7. any other matter, including the conduct of the applicant or any other person, which in the circumstances of the case the court may consider relevant.