Contentious Probate

Worried about the validity of a Will?   Not provided for under a Will?

The death of a partner, parent, friend or other loved one is always upsetting, and can be stressful. Especially if their Will is challenged or if there is a dispute relating to their Estate. We can help you with timely and sympathetic advice to ensure you have the right answers and solutions for you.

We work with a Lexcel accredited law firm [Premier Solicitors] who have a specialist Contentious Probate Team that deals with all forms of disputes relating to Wills, Estates, Trusts and Court of Protection issues.

What is Contentious Probate?

Contentious Probate cases have been on the increase in recent years. It can be a complex and unclear area of law.

Contentious Probate is where someone is disputing a deceased’s estate. This could be the administration of the estate, the contents of a Will or even concerns as to the Executors.

We act for beneficiaries, Executors and trustees.

Our partners [Premier Solicitors]have extensive experience in handling Contentious Probate matters such as:

  • Where inadequate provision has been made in a Will
  • Claims regarding the validity of a Will
  • Disputes relating to the interpretation of the terms of a Will
  • Claims regarding agreements made with the deceased before death, particularly with regards to the disposal of the Estate e.g loans that have not been repaid
  • Disputes over the identification of beneficiaries.
  • Claims for and against Executors, Personal Representatives and Trustees, or in order to remove or substitute parties.
  • Disputes relating to Trusts and Charity.
  • Claims for the rectification of Wills and Trusts
  • Disputes relating to assets of an estate

They work on an initial fixed fee cost basis and are happy to discuss fee payment options thereafter.

They are ACATPS (Association of Contentious Trust and Probate) accredited which is a kite mark for Solicitors specialising in Contentious Probate law.

FAQ’s

Will it be expensive to contest a Will?

Not necessarily, we often find this is a key concern for clients so we offer fixed fees for initial investigatory and advisory aspects where possible.

It is impossible to say how much any matter will cost, as each case is different. However we try to be as flexible as possible and look at all funding options available that might suit you.

Possible types of funding option include legal expenses insurance, “no-win, no fee”, deferred payments or third party finding where appropriate.

For example, you may be able to fund the case through legal expenses insurance, which may be tied in to your home insurance policy, for instance. If so, we can discuss this further with you.

What if there is no Will?

If someone dies without having made a Will, then there are strict rules as to who can inherit in these circumstances. This is known as the Intestacy Rules.

Issues arise as to who is entitled to apply to administer the estate.

I have not been left anything in a Will but I think I should have been?

This is quite a common issue. If you feel a Will has not adequately made any provision for you, you may be able to bring look at a claim under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975.

Our partners [Premier Solicitors]can assess your claim and work with you with you to bring and defend proceedings where no or inadequate provision has been made for an individual in a Will.  

What is an Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975?

Where a Will (or in cases where there is no Will, the Intestacy Rules) does not provide reasonable financial provision for all those entitled to expect it, an individual may be able to make a claim against an Estate for such provisions. This is known as an Inheritance Act claim.

As such you may have a claim against an Estate if you fall into one of the categories of permitted applicants.

You may have to demonstrate that you were dependent on the deceased at the time of their death, or lived with them for two years immediately before their death. If the claim is successful, the Court can make a variety of Orders which, in effect, rewrites the Will or the Intestacy Rules to ensure that reasonable financial provision is made for you.

Get help today

You may need to act fast as there are certain strict time limits to bring such a claim.

Our Partners [Premier Solicitors]will guide you through any proceedings and keep the process as simple and stress free as possible.

If you feel any of the above relates to you or you think you may have claim, get in touch for specialist legal advice.