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Dispute Resolution

Our approachable Dispute Resolution team provide commercial, cost effective advice focused on delivering the best possible outcome for you. We offer a number of pricing options, ranging from conditional fee agreements to fixed fees and will discuss all pricing options at the outset.

If you are concerned about the impact of Coronavirus on you or your business, we have dedicated teams ready to help. We are offering a lower fixed fee video consultation to all new enquiries.

 
 
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    “Gregg Latchams have provided a fully transparent service during a very stressful time. Communication is so important at times like this and they do this very well. They’ve treated me as an equal, answered every question I’ve asked, offered me advice and guidance at each stage, and provided me with draft letters and alternative options which has helped me feel empowered. I thank them for their good service and would happily recommend them to others.”

     

Contesting a Will & Inheritance Disputes

Legal advice for contesting a Will and Inheritance Disputes

If someone you know has died and you feel that the Will doesn’t reflect their wishes, or you think the person was coerced into making one without full mental capacity, our expert legal team can help you contest a Will. You may have fallen out with the person(s) charged with administering the estate, or think they are acting unfairly.

Specialist Inheritance Dispute Solicitors

At Gregg Latchams our team of specialist Inheritance Dispute solicitors offer expertise in all aspects of contesting a Will. You can be assured that we will guide you through the process and advise you on how to achieve the best possible outcome. We understand how emotive inheritance disputes can be. We actively work to minimise the stress and financial implications of the case, providing realistic advice every step of the way

If you are concerned about an inheritance issue, we can help. Below you will find answers to some commonly asked questions about contesting a Will and inheritance disputes. If you are ready to talk to a solicitor, please contact our friendly team for an initial no obligation discussion by calling 0117 906 9400 or email enquiries@gregglatchams.com 

What happens when a Will is contested?

When a person has died, the only people who are able to see the Will are the executors and they will usually need to apply for a Grant of Probate. This is a legal document which confirms that the executor has the power to deal with the deceased person’s assets and confirming that the person named on it is entitled to deal with the estate, i.e. collect all the assets, pay all liabilities and debts of the estate and distribute the net balance to entitled beneficiaries). The Grant will be issued by the Probate Registry and once it has been issued, it is a public document.

Anyone can ask to see a Will of someone once the Grant has been issued. If once you have seen a copy of the will you are unhappy and you feel that an inheritance has been affected, then you can challenge the Will in several ways.

I don’t think the Will is valid

To be valid, a Will must be in writing, be signed by the person making it, and be witnessed and signed by two other people. If the will has not been signed properly, then you may be able to challenge it.

I don’t think the person who made the Will had mental capacity when they wrote the Will

If the person who made the Will had an illness when they died, for example dementia, when they made the Will, then they may not have understood what they were doing when they wrote the Will. It will be necessary to show that they lacked the appropriate mental capacity to prepare and sign a will.

I think someone was putting pressure on the person who made the Will

You might feel that someone put undue pressure or influence on the person who made the Will and that the Will does not really look like the Will that would be written without that influence?

I don’t think the person who made the Will understood what they were signing

Sometimes, documents are signed that have not been read properly or not understood. If you think that this is correct, you can challenge the Will on the grounds that the person who made the Will did not have ‘knowledge or approval’.

I was financially dependent on the person who has died but I have not been left anything

It is possible under the terms of the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 for certain people to make a claim against an estate after death.

Who can make a claim?

There are certain people who can make a claim against an estate, such as a disappointed spouse or child. If you are unsure if you are one of those people, we can help you.

Once you know if you can make a claim, to be successful in your claim you will need to show that a Will fails to make “reasonable financial provision” for you, for example if a spouse / civil partner makes a claim on a estate, it means such financial provision as it would be reasonable in all the circumstances for a spouse/civil partner to receive. This means their claim is not limited to just what they need for their day to day living expenses.

In the case of any other applicant, it means such financial provision as it would be reasonable in all the circumstances for the applicant to receive for his or her maintenance. This is a lower standard than the one that applies to spouses and civil partners; any financial award will be designed to cover day to day expenses.

I am concerned that someone has made a Will but I am not allowed to see it or I think it has been destroyed

You can use the Probate Registry Online Search facility to find out if a relative left a Will. If there isn’t a Will, the Probate Registry can also let you know if someone is trying to deal with your relative’s estate.

What can I do if there is no Will?

If someone dies without making a Will, they are said to have died ‘intestate. This means that the options of challenging a Will are not available to you, but you have grounds for one of the other claims and here at Gregg Latchams we can help you.

Are there any time limits that may affect my ability to contest a Will?

This depends on the type of claim you are looking to bring. Some claims have time limits as short as 6 months after a Grant is obtained from the Probate Registry. It is important to seek legal advice as soon as possible to understand and protect your position.

I am an Executor and I am involved in a dispute about the deceased’s estate.

We can advise you how to continue dealing with an estate if such a claim is brought against the estate by a disappointed beneficiary. Cases of undue influence can be difficult to prove, but we can look into your case to see if it is worth taking further.

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