Son wins case over father’s disputed will

A man who returned from America has won a ruling that his brother pressured their father to sign over the family home before his death.

Paul Tociapski, 52, sued his brother, Boris, over the transfer of Hillcrest Cottage, in Weedon which was signed over to Boris by their father, Igor, in February 2010.

Paul’s barrister, Araba Taylor, told London’s High Court the transfer of the £350,000 home was “procured by undue influence” by Boris.

Judge Stuart Isaacs QC accepted that the property transfer “calls for an explanation” and told the court: “There is no sufficient evidence before me to satisfy me that the deceased executed the transfer with full, free and informed thought. For reasons of undue influence I consider that the transfer should be set aside.”

Paul Tociapski, who lives in Florida, also challenged the validity of a May 2009 will, claiming his father lacked full understanding. The will left Boris the rest of the estate - worth around £250,000.

Judge Isaacs said he was “not satisfied” Igor Tociapski understood what was in the 2009 will or its effect.

The ruling means the 2009 will is invalid, and a 2007 will - splitting the estate equally - will now take effect.

Boris, 47, was not in court. Miss Taylor said his whereabouts are unknown.

Igor Tociapski ran an antique clock business, initially based in Notting Hill before relocating to Northamptonshire.