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What Claveloux V. Bacotti Teaches Us About Tortious Interference With An Expected Inheritance


Most estate law deals with matters that are litigated in probate court. For instance, undue influence claims are made by challenging a decedent’s will in probate court. However, in the case of tortious interference with an expected inheritance, things play out a little differently. If you were expecting to receive an inheritance only to learn that someone else had interfered in your ability to receive it, you may be able to bring a claim for tortious interference with an expected inheritance. Read on to learn whether you might have standing to bring a claim and what that would require.

What is Tortious Interference with an Expected Inheritance?  

Tortious interference with an expected inheritance occurs when an individual commits tortious conduct in an attempt to interfere with or deprive an individual of their intended inheritance. Types of tortious interference may include fraud, duress, or other tortious means, which interfere with an individual receiving the inheritance or gift that the decedent intended to. If you were expecting to receive an inheritance and did not, due to the tortious interference of a third-party, you may bring a claim against them for tortious interference with an intended inheritance. Unlike other probate matters, this will not be litigated in probate court, but in civil court. This will allow you to recover damages that you suffered as a result of the interference, as well as to reclaim your rightful inheritance. If you believe that your inheritance has been tortiously interfered with, it is a good idea to contact an estate attorney as soon as possible to ensure that you have time to expeditiously bring a claim.

Establishing Tortious Interference with an Expected Inheritance

In order to succeed in bringing a claim for tortious interference with an expected inheritance, you will need to establish certain elements. These elements were laid out in the Florida case Claveloux v. Bacotti, 778 So.2d 399, 400 (Fla. 2d DCA 2001). This case established that the following factors must be asserted by the moving party:

  • You must have expected to receive an inheritance from the decedent;
  • The defendant must be intentionally interfered with your expected inheritance through tortious conduct;
  • The tortious interference must have resulted in a change to your expected inheritance; and
  • You must have suffered damages as a result.

If you believe that you can satisfy these elements, talk to a Florida estate attorney about bringing a claim for tortious interference with an expected inheritance. It should be noted that attempts to interfere with an individual’s inheritance do not give rise to a cause of action unless they are actually successful in interfering with the inheritance.

Contact Mark R. Manceri, P.A. in Pompano Beach, Florida

If you have been deprived of an inheritance that was rightfully yours due to the tortious conduct of another, contact Pompano Beach estate and trust litigation lawyer Mark R. Manceri, P.A. today to schedule a consultation and learn about your options for taking action and making things right.


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