Wife claims husband’s death during divorce cost her millions

Family Law|May 10th 2016

The widow of man who died during divorce proceedings has launched legal proceedings seeking to have his will set aside.

Mari Vindis was married to wealthy car dealer Nigel Vindis for several decades and enjoyed a prosperous lifestyle, with holiday homes and a Rolls Royce. They had two children, both now in their 20s, before eventually separating in 2011. Two years later she filed for divorce but Mr Vindis died only two months later, before the divorce was completed.

Her husband left a will and supplementary “letter of intentions” leaving the majority of an estimated £12 million fortune to their two children, and only £36,000 to her. Mrs Vindis now hopes to persuade a judge to overturn the terms of the will and make “reasonable provision” for her, arguing that, after a long marriage, she could have received half her husband’s estate in a divorce court.

Her barrister told a Court that her “reasonable needs” had not been met by the terms of the will.

“Mari brings her claim as Nigel’s widow. They met as teenagers when Mari was 16 and Nigel 18. This is a case where the whole of the value of Nigel’s estate has been built up during the course of the marriage. The marriage was a partnership. Whilst Mari worked in the early years of the marriage and undertook occasional tasks for the family business, she was for the largest part wife, mother and homemaker.”

According to media reports, her husband’s two sisters also plan to make a claim against the estate, and dispute Mrs Vindis’ entitlement to a larger share.

The case was adjourned for further evidence and will resume at a later date.

Mr Vindis’ car dealership employed 750 people across 17 showrooms.

Image by Eddy Clio via Flickr under a Creative Commons licence

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