Three Australian children who were fathered by Dutch immigrant Willem Wijma have won their claim to a share of his inheritance, the High Court in Sydney ruled on Thursday, reports ANP. Wijma’s family in Groningen claimed he had been nothing more than a sperm donor and had very little to do with his Australian children.
Wijma died in 2001 leaving €200,000. The court ruling ends a five-year legal battle.
The court said that while Wijma had never had a serious relationship or lived with with Constance Sullivan, the mother of Julie, Geoffrey and Scott, or supported them financially, he had had occasional contact with the children. DNA tests proved the children were his.
Claims by the Dutch family that a will had been destroyed were not proven, the judge said. Under Australian law, all biological children are entitled to a share in the inheritance of someone who died without making a will.
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