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Fight for Rinehart fortune tears family apart

This year Gina Rinehart took the title of the world's richest woman but became embroiled in an ongoing court battle with her children concerning control of their massive trust fund.

Her three eldest children, John Hancock, Hope Welker and Bianca Rinehart filed a lawsuit against their mother accusing her of "deceptive, manipulative and disgraceful conduct."

Ginia, Rinehart's youngest daughter, has sided against her siblings, saying that the legal action is "motivated entirely by greed."

Details behind Rinehart's court battle with her three eldest children were released to the public after a High Court judge denied her a suppression order.

The details show that Rinehart had secretly extended the date on a trust fund for her children so it would not be available to them until 2068, 56 years later than the original date in 2012.

Ginia's 25th birthday was supposed to be the date for the release of the trust fund set up by the children's grandfather, Lang Hancock.

Instead three days beforehand, Rinehart sent out an email to her children saying they had to keep the trust under her control, or face bankruptcy.

In a flurry of emails, the children refused to sign the document without seeing any of the paperwork of the trust or its financial statements. When the date arrived, the three children filed a lawsuit in the New South Wales Supreme Court.

According to Rinehart "none of the plaintiffs has displayed the degree of perseverance, work ethic, responsibility and dedication that would be required to administer the trust."

In May, Rinehart unexpectedly brought forward the vesting date of the disputed fund, meaning her children can now claim their share of the family's multimillion-dollar trust.

However, the bitter family battle is set to continue.

Rinehart is the head of Hancock Prospecting, an oil and iron ore mining company. She is worth over $29 billion and was named the world's wealthiest woman - growing $1 million richer every half hour.