In the case of Lionel Lau Siang Kok v Datuk Seri Panglima Lau Cho Kun [2014] 10 CLJ, , the Plaintiff claims that he was a legitimate child of the deceased, thus, he was entitled to the distribution of the deceased’s estate pursuant to Section 3 of the Distribution Act 1958. To support his claim, the Plaintiff produced two birth certificates which contained differing names of his parents and also stated different birth dates. The Plaintiff also prayed for the production of the deceased’s Will.

However, the Defendant/Executor of the deceased argued that:-

  1. Plaintiff was not a beneficiary in the deceased’s Will;
  2. Plaintiff has no locus standi to start a claim for the production of the Will;
  3. Plaintiff did not fall under the definition of “any persons of interest” under Section 41 of the Probate and Administration Act 1959.

 

In this case the Plaintiff failed to prof that he was the ‘legitimate’ child of the deceased which entitled him to any of the deceased’s assets and he also failed to prove that there was a valid marriage between the deceased and the plaintiff’s mother.

Under Section 41 of the Probate and Administration Act 1959, on the application of ‘any person interested’, the Court may order the person in possession of the will or other testamentary document of a deceased person to produce the will or document for the purpose of examining that document.

Following the case of Lionel Lau Siang Kok v Datuk Seri Panglima Lau Cho Kun [2014] 10 CLJ, it was held that the plaintiff was not classified as ‘any person interested’ according to Section 41 of the Probate and Administration Act 1959 (“the Act”). As he was not named in the deceased’s will, he was a stranger and also not a beneficiary under the will.

The Defendant/Executor of the deceased’s estate successfully resisted to the orders sought by the plaintiff on the following grounds that the plaintiff:

  • was not a beneficiary under the deceased’s will;
  • did not apply for grant of probate in Malaysia which entitled the plaintiff to the relief sought;
  • had no locus standi to institute a claim for an order to compel the defendant to produce the deceased’s will;
  • had not provided any cogent evidence that he was the natural son of the deceased; and
  • did not fall under the definition of ‘any persons interested’ under the provisions of Section 41 of the Act.

In conclusion, the Court finds that the plaintiff is not an ‘interested’ person as he was not named or provided for in the will of the deceased, thus the Plaintiff does not possess the mandatory locus standi to make such application to order the person in possession for the production of the will under Section 41 of the Act.