Adelaide lawyer tries to claim nearly $40,000 share of dead client’s will
An Adelaide lawyer wants to take a share of nearly $40,000 from her dead client’s will after she personally delivered his ashes to Lithuania.
The lawyer, who cannot be named, prepared a will for the man in March 2015.
A judgment published by the SA Supreme Court reveals that, instead of paying her a fee, he left her $3000.
There was also a direction that the man wished to be cremated and his ashes returned to a relative in the country of Lithuania, near Poland, in northern Europe.
The man died in August 2015, and the lawyer, without express permission, travelled to Lithuania to personally deliver the ashes.
She charged him eight hours a day for eight days for the trip, totalling nearly $25,000, as well as $15,000 in travelling expenses.
In total, the woman charged the estate $45,000 for the trip and other fees relating to the administration of the estate.
At no time did she ask the court for directions.
In 2019, the Legal Profession Conduct Commissioner charged her with professional misconduct.
The commissioner alleges the lawyer did not have authority to charge for repatriation of the ashes.
But the lawyer has asked the Supreme Court to instead make an order that she is allowed to charge the estate nearly $40,000.
Originally published as Ashes wish sparks lawyer’s $40,000 claim