Couple escape jail sentence over Will forgery

By Lenore Rice

A couple have evaded a prison sentence in respect of forging a Will and trying to defraud their own son of an inheritance, largely on the basis of ill health.

Nigel Crisp, aged 63, forged a Will of his late father Robert who died in 2011. The fake Will purported to leave the entire estate to Mr Crisp's wife Jennifer, aged 58, and she used the Will to withdraw around £10,000 from the deceased's bank account.

Nigel Crisp was in the process of trying to sell his father's home when family members raised concerns with the police that the Will was fake. A handwriting expert confirmed that Nigel Crisp had actually written the Will and the £123,000 property sale did not go ahead. In the end the fraud totalled approximately £10,000.

The actual Will of Robert Crisp left most of his estate to his sister-in-law, with the remainder going to Nigel Crisp's son Stephen.

The court heard how Nigel Crisp had previous convictions for fraud, and about his poor health. He arrived at court in a wheelchair and was said to be on 34 tablets a day and suffering from heart disease. He took ill prior to sentencing and the couple agreed that they could be sentenced in their absence.

The court gave Nigel Crisp a suspended 22 month prison sentence, and Jennifer Crisp a suspended 3 month prison sentence and a 6 month supervision order.

If you require legal advice in respect of making a Will, updating a Will, inheritance tax, or any other matter, contact one of the probate solicitors at Wilson Nesbitt in Belfast by calling 0800 840 9293.