Insights / News

Elaine Palser_Mendy claim

Elaine Palser successful in polygamous marriage claim

Elaine Palser acted successfully for the executors of the will of Mary Mendy in their claim to revoke letters of administration on the ground that Ms Mendy’s purported marriage was void because it was a polygamous marriage. 

In English law, a valid marriage revokes any will executed prior to marriage.  Master Pester found that the defendant (Ms Mendy’s purported husband) was already married at the time Ms Mendy and the defendant purported to marry in Gambia.  He also found that Ms Mendy was domiciled in England at the time of the alleged marriage and so English law did not permit her to enter into a polygamous marriage, even if the marriage was valid in Gambian law.  The claimants said that Ms Mendy had not known of the polygamy at the time of the purported marriage and, when she found out, had tried to divorce the defendant prior to her tragic death in the Grenfell Tower fire alongside her daughter. Letters of administration granted to the defendant were therefore revoked by the court, and probate was granted to the claimants as the named executors under Ms Mendy’s last will. 

The decision has been reported in the Telegraph, the Daily Mail, and the Times

Elaine was instructed by Jurit.

Find out more

Elaine Palser has an extensive chancery and commercial practice, with an emphasis on contentious probate and trusts, insolvency, commercial disputes, and professional negligence. She is also a CEDR-accredited mediator. Elaine has been described as “an excellent advocate”“technically superb” and “a seasoned legal gladiator” (Legal 500), and she is recommended as a leading junior in three areas.

To instruct Elaine or to find out more please contact Elaine’s Practice Management Team: Matt Sale (+44 (0)20 7427 4910) or George Bennett (+44 (0)20 7427 0807).

News 6 Mar, 2023


Elaine Palser

Call: 2002

Portfolio Builder

Select the expertise that you would like to download or add to the portfolio

Download    Add to portfolio   
Title Type CV Email

Remove All


Click here to share this shortlist.
(It will expire after 30 days.)