£100,000 gift to minor in a Will, absolute, with a parental receipt clause. The minor and parents live in Thailand.
The executor has concerns about paying over the money to the parents, one is his sister.
The parents are demanding payment under s3(3) Children Act 1989. Are there any grounds for refusing payment of all, or part, of the money?
Lexis informs me that the parents’ entitlement under S3(3) to receive the legacy on the child’s behalf is untested in the courts.
Personally, I think it is a stretch to say that the legacy is presently “property…which the child is entitled to receive”. The child can’t give valid receipt for it during their childhood, so they aren’t entitled to receive it during their childhood (which I take to mean, absolutely).
I can’t see how parliament intended this section to defeat trustees holding property on trust for children.
My understanding is that it is generally accepted that parents may not only provide good receipt under CA 1989 s3 but may in fact demand payment where the child is entitled to receive the relevant property which under the will he is so entitled.
I have not had to deal with this situation in Thailand, but if the minor child is nearly an adult by age, it might makes sense to wait until the child reaches the age under which he or she can give a valid receipt. Otherwise I agree with Jane Huntley.
If push comes to shove, you can wait until proceedings are commenced in England, which from a Thailand perspective may not make economic sense, and may well force the parents to agree to the appointment of Trustees to hold on to and invest the monies until the minor child is able to receive the monies.
From the nature of the original question are the parents able and willing to invest the monies for the minor child or is there a risk that the parents may use the monies so that there is nothing for the minor child to inherit in due time?
I know this might be more practical rather than legal advice, but sometimes practicality is needed.
Peter Double / Probate Resealing Services