Contesting a will solicitors

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Should you find yourself either excluded from a will, bequeathed less than you anticipated, or believe there’s an error in the will, it may be possible to challenge it.

The idea of disputing a will may seem overwhelming, but our team of specialist will disputes solicitors at Moore Barlow LLP possess the skill and experience to guide you through this complex process.

What is contesting a will?

Contesting a will refers to the legal process of challenging the validity or terms of a deceased person’s will. This can occur if there are concerns about the mental capacity of the testator, undue influence, fraud, or if the will does not meet the legal requirements. Contesting a will may involve issuing a claim at Court, presenting evidence in support the claim and can potentially result in a court hearing.

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Scott Taylor

Scott Taylor

Partner | Private wealth disputes

01483 464274

On what grounds can I contest a will?

You can contest a will in the UK on several grounds:

  • Lack of testamentary capacity: The testator didn’t have the requisite mental capacity to understand the implications of their will.
  • Undue influence: The testator was coerced or pressured into making the will.
  • Improper execution: The will wasn’t correctly signed or witnessed.
  • Fraud or forgery: The will was tampered with or isn’t genuine.
  • Lack of knowledge and approval: The testator wasn’t aware and did not approve of the will’s content.
  • Rectification and construction claims: Clerical errors or unclear wording.
  • Claims under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975: Inadequate provision for dependants.

How to contest a will

To contest a will in the UK, your need to establish valid grounds such as lack of testamentary capacity or undue influence. Consult a solicitor specialising in probate disputes, to gather necessary evidence, and initiate a legal challenge within the required time limits. Prompt action and expert advice are crucial.

Should you consider challenging a will, promptly consulting our legal experts is crucial. Specific claims have stringent time frames, so swift action is vital to preserve your claim rights. Disagreements over wills or estate claims can frequently be settled outside court, through mediation or other alternative dispute resolution processes. If court proceedings become necessary, we are committed to guiding you throughout.

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Why choose our contesting a will solicitors?

Here at Moore Barlow LLP, our contesting a will solicitors have extensive experience in handling complex and sensitive disputes, providing personalised advice and practical solutions to protect your interests. With a deep understanding of the intricacies of contesting a will, we offer a collaborative and strategic approach to achieve the best possible outcome for you. Trust us to navigate the legal complexities and ensure your voice is heard.

How can our contesting a will solicitors help?

Our contesting a will solicitors are experts in resolving disputes related to inheritance, trusts, and estates. We provide tailored advice and representation to individuals and families in complex and high-stakes cases. Our team adopts a strategic and proactive approach to achieve the best possible outcome for our clients, whether through negotiation, mediation, or litigation. We understand the sensitivity and emotional impact of contesting a will and strive to provide a supportive and empathetic service throughout the process.

We have offices in LondonRichmondSouthamptonGuildfordLymington and Woking and offer specialist will disputes legal services to clients nationwide.

We are here to help

Discover how our expert private wealth dispute lawyers can help you.

Contact our private wealth disputes team

Contesting a will – FAQs

Do you need grounds to contest a will?

Yes, there are several grounds on which a will can be contested, including lack of testamentary capacity, undue influence, fraud, forgery, and improper execution. It is important to consult with a qualified contesting a will solicitor to determine if you have valid grounds to contest a will.

Contesting a will involves challenging the validity of a deceased person’s will. If necessary, this can be done by issuing a claim at Court, typically on the grounds of lack of testamentary capacity, undue influence, fraud, or improper execution. The process usually involves gathering evidence, presenting arguments, and seeking a resolution through negotiation or litigation.

The time limit for contesting a will varies depending on a variety of factors. It may be as short as a few months, while in others it could be several years. It is important to consult with a solicitor to determine the specific time limit applicable to your situation.

To contest a will, you typically need evidence that shows the testator lacked mental capacity, was unduly influenced, or the will was improperly executed. This can include medical records, witness statements, expert opinions, and other relevant documents.

While it is not a legal requirement to hire a solicitor to challenge a will, it is highly recommended. Challenging a will can be a complex and sensitive legal process and having the guidance and expertise of a solicitor can greatly increase your chances of success.

You would need a solicitor who specialises in contested wills or probate disputes, and who are members of ACTAPS, STEP and ConTra. They will have experience in handling cases where there is a dispute over the validity or interpretation of a will and can provide guidance and representation throughout the legal process.

The cost of contesting a will in the UK can vary depending on the complexity of the case and the specific circumstances involved. It is recommended to consult with a solicitor who can provide a more accurate estimate based on your individual situation.

Contesting a will can be successful if there are valid grounds, such as lack of testamentary capacity, undue influence, or fraud. However, success depends on the specific circumstances and evidence available. It is advisable to consult with an experienced estate litigation lawyer to assess the merits of the case and determine the likelihood of success.

The legal costs for contesting a will are typically paid by the person contesting the will, unless there is a provision in the will or an agreement between the parties stating otherwise. The court may also order the losing party to pay the costs if the dispute goes through the courts, but this is discretionary.

The length of time it takes to contest a will can vary depending on the complexity of the case in which it is being contested. It can range from a few months to several years.

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