Court hearing case over Galway lotto winnings

Mary Walsh is being sued by David Walsh (52) who claims he is entitled to a one sixth share of the prize

Court hearing case over Galway lotto winnings

File photo

The High Court has heard that a Galway woman expressed concerns about transferring a house to her stepson a few months after a €3.3m lotto win.

Mary Walsh of Perssepark in Ballinasloe is being sued by 52-year-old David Walsh, who claims he is entitled to a one-sixth share of the prize.

She claims he took the family home instead of a €200,000 cut.

Mr Walsh claims he is entitled to over half a million euro as one of six people who signed the back of the winning ticket in January 2011.

He said his late father Peter rang him to tell him the good news and told him to call over to sign the back of the ticket.

He said he do so the day after the draw in the presence of his father and his stepmother Mary Walsh, who had also signed it.

She claims he didn’t sign the ticket until three days later and that they only asked him do so to avoid having to pay gift tax.

Under the National Lottery rules, anyone who signs the back of the ticket is a joint owner of it and has a stake in the prize.

David’s father died less than a year after the win, and the court has today been hearing about the transfer of the family home at Knocknagreena in Ballinasloe.

The house was worth about €150,000 at the time, and Mary Walsh claims her stepson accepted it instead of a share of the prize.

Her solicitor has been giving evidence of that transfer.

Amy Giblin said she received a letter from Mary and Peter Walsh in September 2011 regarding the transfer of the house to David.

Two months later, while her husband was gravely ill in hospital, she said Mary told her she needed more time and asked her to leave it for a while and do nothing.

Ms Giblin said she was taken aback by the tone of a letter she later received from David Walsh’s solicitor which referred to the urgency of completing the transfer because of his father’s condition.

She said she brought this to Mary’s attention, who said both she and her late husband were happy to go ahead with the transfer.

Ms Giblin was also asked about an earlier meeting with Mary during which she expressed her concerns about her stepson’s marital situation. She said he’d been divorced twice and was nervous his ex wives were waiting in the wings to make a claim on the house. She said she also expressed concerns about his work ethic.

The case continues.