Speakers: Lindsay Ellison SC
Digital content
  •  Video File
  •  Paper

The Serpent’s Tooth
Adult Children, Estrangement and Family Provision

Claims by adult children represent the most common challenge to a testator’s wishes. For
the last 50 years, the “able bodied” child has not been excluded from bringing a successful
family provision claim against the estate of a parent. Estrangement is a lawyer’s word,
not found in the legislation. Can a parent ever successfully exclude a child following a
single argument or having been ignored for decades? Does “moral duty” always require
a parent to make provision for a child? Not surprisingly, the authorities provide no clear

Speaker:  Lindsay Ellison SC, NSW, back by popular demand
Date: 16 June 2016

Location: This seminar was delivered at the Elder & Succession Law Conference 2016, Hobart, Tasmania

Video and detailed paper (43 pages) delivered on order.


After a short and uneventful career as a suburban solicitor, Lindsay was called to the bar in 1985.  He became a Senior Counsel in 2005.  He practices principally in Equity and Probate and has appeared in many of the leading NSW Wills and Estates cases. He frequently lectures barristers and solicitors on aspects of law and practice.  He is an accredited Mediator under the Australian Mediation Accreditation System.

Lindsay is a former Vice President of the Australian Academy of Forensic Sciences and a longtime member of the Australian Skeptics, the Samuel Griffith Society and the Centre for Independent Studies.

He is happily married to his first wife and has two teenage children and a dog.  He has no interest in sailing, skiing, cooking or learning a foreign language and does not own a winery.  He has not the slightest intention of walking the el Camino de Santiago.  He does not wish to achieve a work/life balance.  He eats too much chocolate.

Lindsay has made over 425 donations to the Red Cross Blood Transfusion Service.  He recommends you do the same.  His philosophy is that if you draw blood, the least you can do is give some back.