Mother Loses Huge Inheritance Following Court Of Appeal Decision
Following a Court of Appeal ruling, Hilary Harrison-Morgan has been forced to repay millions from an inheritance offered from ex-partner and cohabitant, Dr Rainer Kahrmann.
Having left his Swiss wife in 1991, rich banker, Dr Kahrmann, started a relationship which developed in cohabiting with Ms Harrison-Morgan.
During the relationship, the pair conceived and raised twin sons in their lavish London home in Belgravia.
The pair separated and the banker returned to Germany where he lived until his death in 2014.
Around this time, a development company made an offer for Kahrmann’s Belgravia house even though Harrison-Morgan and her two children were living there.
However, the success of the deal rested on the house being sold as a vacant possession which would mean the family needed to vacate prior to the exchange of contracts and completion.
Unfortunately, Dr Kahrmann died during negotiations leaving the outcome unclear for Harrison-Morgan.
However, she alleges a deal was made between herself and the executors, Kahrmann’s two daughters from a previous relationship, whereby the profits were set to be split between Harrison-Morgan and Kahrmann’s four children.
Consequently, the £4.4 million profits from the Belgravia home sale were split with Harrison-Morgan receiving £2.2 million and the rest shared between the four siblings.
However, Alice Kahrmann, daughter and executor of Dr Kahrmann’s estate sued Harrison-Morgan shortly after the disposal of the estate and the payment was made.
Alice Kahrmann claimed an express common intention constructive trust already exist with Kahrmann’s business partner, making the payment made to Harrison-Morgan from the buyer illegal as it breached the terms of the trust.
The request for the money to be returned and distributed amongst the four siblings has since sparked a bitter inheritance dispute.
Having claimed her payment arrangement was made prior to Kahrmann’s death in order to ensure compliance with the vacant possession request, the High Court judge originally sided in her favour.
However, during the recent appeal hearing, judges ruled against the original decision claiming the money should be returned to the pre-existing trust intended for the four siblings.
Currently, over a million has been spent in court fees with the appeals court ordering Harrison-Morgan to pay an additional £500,000 in court fees.
As the case heads to the Supreme Court, all orders were stayed until the decision from the final appeal is made.
Should cases like this result in a court decision? Could preventative steps produced a different outcome in this case?