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 Recorded Webinar: Knowledge and Approval and Testamentary Capacity: Getting it Right from the Starting Block

Date:  Thursday 3rd February 2022
Duration:  approx. 1 hour

Objections to a will being admitted to probate are generally based on either the testator lacking testamentary capacity, or failing to know and approve the particular will. Disputes can be complex and the costs substantial. This session examines how succession lawyers can prevent these types of disputes at the will-making stage, including:

  • Testator’s knowledge and approval essential to validity – what are the parameters?
  • Relationship between testamentary capacity and knowledge and approval
  • Evidentiary burdens in testing capacity – an overview
  • Assessing whether the will is the product of a free and capable mind
  • Assessing capacity remotely and in person – differences in evidentiary burden
  • Communicating with client over capacity assessment
  • Recording of initial mental capacity assessment
  • Determining when to refer for further assessment
  • When capacity is at issue – key dos and don’ts of solicitors
  • Case update
Recorded Webinars,Wills and Succession Law,Recorded Webinar:  Knowledge and Approval and Testamentary Capacity: Getting it Right from the Starting Block

Andrew Verspaandonk, Barrister, Melbourne

Andrew Verspaandonk is a member of the Victorian Bar and a member of STEP. He signed the Bar Roll in 2000 and after a wide initial practice has since has developed a practice almost exclusively centered on Wills and Estate litigation of various kinds in the Supreme and County Courts, as Counsel and as Mediator. Cases appeared in includeNicholson-v-Knaggs [2009] VSC 64 (the “Betty Dyke” Litigation) in 2008, one of the longest running Testamentary Capacity and Undue Influence trials in Victoria, Sinclair-v-Moss [2006] VSC 130, relating to the review of trustees’ discretions . Simpson-v-Cunning [2011] VSC 466 which confirmed the departure of Victorian law from the rule established in Re: Slater [1907] 1 Ch 665 with regard to ademption of property alienated by attorneys. He has also appeared in the Supreme Court of Nauru (sitting in Melbourne and Nauru) retained on behalf of the Republic of Nauru in estate related litigation. He has extensive mediation experience both as Counsel and as Mediator in Supreme Court and County Court proceedings. Rate of resolution of matters mediated is over 90%.

He has given many presentations and contributed articles on various aspects of Wills and Estates law in Victoria, interstate and overseas on behalf of various Law Societies and their journals, Law Associations, STEP, Leo Cussen Institute, Capacity Australia and private CLE providers.


This webinar is suitable for lawyers throughout Australia who advise in succession law. This webinar is for practitioners with some knowledge in this area and looking to improve their knowledge.


Lawyers can claim up to 1 CPD unit/point – substantive law.  This webinar has been designed to run for 1 hour, however, webinar lengths can vary depending on the level of questions and discussion.

WA lawyers – From 1/4/2021, due to changes to your CPD requirements we are unable to verify your completion of recorded webinars to the Legal Practice Board of WA.

If you need assistance or have an enquiry, please do not hesitate to contact our Webinar Coordinator, Lisa Tran on (03) 8601 7709 or email: lisa@tved.net.au

© Television Education Network Pty Ltd 2022

Product Code: WBFFEB22
 Price:  $269.50 (Inclusive of GST)
© 2022 Television Education Network Pty Ltd. All rights reserved. The program for this webinar is copyright and may not be reproduced in any form without the prior written consent of the copyright owner.