Section 117 and stepchildren

06 August 2021


Just a quick one to recall. I was acting for a female spouse of a marriage. The man of the relationship was previously married but was divorced. He had a child of that previous marriage. My client and her husband have a child of their new marriage. She wanted to leave her Irish estate to the child of her marriage and exclude her stepchild. Was the stepchild entitled to be included? The answer is no. You will recall that s. 117 of SA 65 is the provision where a child can challenge a will if he or she feels the testator failed in their moral duty. For s. 117 it is only children of the testator’s blood, or those validly adopted that are included in any potential claim. Not stepchildren, foster children, or those to whom she stands in loco parentis.