Contesting probate (no will)

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When a loved one passes away without a valid will in place, the task of dealing with their estate can seem very daunting.

The absence of a will is known as ‘intestacy’. The rules governing intestacy detail who is eligible to inherit from the estate. Nonetheless, these rules might not adequately mirror the wishes or personal relationships of the departed. If you encounter difficulties, such as:

  • Disagreements about who should manage the estate.
  • An unmarried partner of the deceased being overlooked.
  • A child or dependant not being appropriately provided for.
  • An estranged spouse inheriting the estate or a portion of it.

You may wish to contest probate to try and ensure that the wishes of your loved one are accurately reflected after their death.

Contesting probate can be particularly difficult in the absence of a will to substantiate a claim, more so if the estate in question is notably large or complex. The intestacy rules do not accommodate unmarried partners and disregard any verbal commitments made by the deceased during their lifetime.

If you believe you have been unjustly excluded from an inheritance, or have not received the necessary provision, or if somebody is challenging your share of inheritance, we are here to assist you.

Our specialist contesting probate team is vastly experienced in navigating these sensitive situations, with offices located nationwide. We’ve successfully negotiated some of the most complex contested probate disputes, possessing notable expertise in trusts, rural properties, and overseas assets.

Call us today or complete our online form and we will promptly return your call, offering professional, empathetic assistance through this challenging time.

Scott Taylor

Scott Taylor

Partner | Private wealth disputes

01483 464274

Why choose Moore Barlow?

If you find yourself excluded from an inheritance or are a dependent without financial provision, our specialist contesting probate solicitors at Moore Barlow can assist in contesting probate, including in instances where no will is present. With accessible offices in LondonRichmondSouthamptonGuildfordLymington and Woking, you can rely on our team to represent you with diligence and expertise.

Contact us today to explore your options and embark on the path to resolution.

Do you have to go to court when contesting probate?

Most disputes about probate have the potential to be settled through amicable negotiation and discussion, avoiding the need for court intervention. We acknowledge that many people prefer to keep their dispute away from the court environment and, with that in mind, we endeavour to facilitate a resolution through mediation whenever possible.

However, should your dispute not be resolved in this way and the only other option is to proceed to court, rest assured that we will stand with you at every phase, providing unwavering support. Harnessing our wealth of experience in efficiently managing court disputes, we’re dedicated to achieving the most favourable possible outcome on your behalf.

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How much does it cost to contest probate?

The cost to contest probate can vary widely depending on the case’s complexity, the solicitors’ fees, and whether it proceeds to court. Costs might range from a few thousand to several tens of thousands of pounds. Obtaining a preliminary estimate from a solicitor is advisable, so that there are no unexpected legal costs along the way.

How long do you have to contest probate?

Generally, you have six months from the date of the grant of probate to contest it. However, time limits can vary depending on the type of claim and specific circumstances. As probate matters can be complex, it is crucial to seek legal advice promptly when considering challenging probate to ensure you adhere to all relevant deadlines and legal procedures.

We are here to help

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

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