The latest issue of our Irish Wills and Probate Law Update is now live for our online subscribers. Authored by subject experts Stephen Spierin BL and Brian Spierin SC, this update contains commentary on the recent case of Buckley & Anor v Cooper  IEHC 424.
An excerpt from a section of this update relating to testamentary capacity reads:
'When considering evidence in relation to the testamentary capacity of elderly or infirm clients, the court should have regard to the golden rule, which was outlined by Laffoy J in Scally v Rhatigan  IEHC 475 with reference to the judgment of Briggs J In re Key, deceased  EWHC 408 (Ch). The substance of the golden rule is that when a solicitor is instructed to prepare a will for an aged testator, or for one who has been seriously ill, he should arrange for a medical practitioner first to satisfy himself as to the capacity and understanding of the testator, and to make a contemporaneous record of his examination and findings. It should be noted that the courts have held that while compliance with the ‘Golden Rule’ is preferable, non-compliance is not detrimental. The validity of any will has to be considered in relation to its own surrounding circumstances.'