A wealthy stockbroker’s shoe designer ex-wife is locked in a bitter battle against his son over his $130million estate.  

Donna-May Bolinger, 62, is in a Supreme Court fight with Ned Bell, the adult son of her late ex-husband Colin Bell from an earlier marriage. 

The battle began shortly after Bell’s death over a row about his will. In 2015, his will said that Bolinger, an ex Sydney shoe designer, would receive the Woollahra home where she lived for more than a decade. 

However, a supplementary document, known as a codicil, made in 2020 after their separation barred her from receiving gifts from Bell’s estate. 

Her lawyers claim Bell ‘lacked testamentary capacity’ when he made the codicil after suffering a stroke and other major health issues. 

Ned Bell wants to uphold the codicil and is claiming that Bolinger transferred more than $830,000 from joint bank accounts she’d had with her father into a personal one. 

Donna-May Bolinger, 62, is in a Supreme Court fight with Ned Bell, the adult son of her late ex-husband Colin Bell from an earlier marriage

Bolinger insists the transfers took place when she was still with the elder Bell, according to the Sydney Morning Herald. 

Meanwhile, in March 2021, a year before Bell died, NSW Police sought and obtained an interim apprehended domestic violence order against Bolinger.

The order prevented her from approaching or contacting her estranged husband. 

Bell married Bolinger, his fourth wife, in 2014 after they began a relationship in 2010. 

The stockbroker fathered three children, two now adults, from various relationships and has an adult stepdaughter. He died aged 80 in Sydney in March.  

Bollinger’s lawyers claim Bell’s estate is actually worth around $180million and should include a third share in the sailing yacht Southern Cloud, which was once used by the Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark when he visited Hamilton Island in 2017.

The NSW Supreme Court heard the main assets of the estate included minority shareholdings in private companies with an estimated value of almost $100million.

It also includes a $17.5million Woollahra ‘matrimonial’ home he’d owned for decades before meeting Bolinger and a trading account with Bell Potter Securities worth $7million. 

The battle began shortly after Bell’s death over a row about his will. In 2015, his will said that Bolinger, an ex Sydney shoe designer, would receive the Woollahra home where she lived for more than a decade

There is also an outstanding $6 million loan with Colin Bell Pty Ltd. 

Last week, Justice Philip Hallen made an interim property order in Bolinger’s favour to the amount of $750,000. 

The order ruled that she had ‘limited’ ability to generate an income and faced significant expenses, including legal bills.

A hearing to finalise Bell’s estate is expected to take place next year.  

Sydney stockbroker’s $130 million estate pits his shoe designer ex-wife against his son

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