B. Estate provision
According to the Intestate Estate Ordinance (IEO), Cap. 73 , if a person has not married his/her cohabiting partner, and his/her cohabiting partner dies intestate (without a will), he/she cannot share in the estate of his/her cohabiting partner( section 4 ). According to section 2 of the IEO , “intestate” also includes a person who leaves a will but dies intestate as to some beneficial interest in his/her estate.
However, the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Ordinance ( Cap. 481 ) provides a way for a cohabiting partner to apply for financial provision from his/her deceased partner, even if the deceased partner leaves no will and no legal status of husband or wife exists. According to section 3(1)(b)(ix) of the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Ordinance , any person who has been maintained wholly or substantially by the deceased immediately before the deceased’s death can apply for financial provision from the deceased person’s estate. Therefore, if a cohabiting partner can prove that he/she has been maintained by the deceased partner, then he/she can still receive maintenance from the deceased’s estate.