Contested Wills and Estates

Disputes over a will or an intestate estate?

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When a claim can be made against a will

After the passing of a loved one, you and others can be left overwhelmed with grief and worried about what you should do next. Inheritance disputes between family and friends are almost always intensely personal situations, adding another layer to the legal aspects of the dispute. If you're involved in a dispute over inheritance and succession, we're able to tell you honestly and clearly where you stand whilst offering a variety of practical solutions.

Legal Services - Contested wills and estate disputes

What types of problems can arise with a will?

The most common type of dispute over a will is where someone expected to inherit, but either inherited less than they expected, or nothing at all. Another common problem occurs when someone dies without a will. They are said to have died 'intestate', this dramatically affects inheritance and different laws apply.

Another kind of dispute is where the validity of the will is challenged. It may be that it doesn't follow the proper legal formalities, or there is a concern it's a forged will.

Sometimes a will has been made by someone and either they had been pressured into making it or they lacked mental capacity when writing it. The elderly are vulnerable to these types of issues, like when planning succession.

What can Simpson Millar LLP Solicitors do?

We are a law firm with over 150 years' experience having a long history of handling wills and probate.

The contentious probate team combines expert knowledge of litigation with that of wills and probate. Because of this, you can be assured that we will give you the clear, honest advice you need about any disputes arising from a will. Some of the things we can assist you with include:

How much will it all cost?

In most circumstances, you can fund the case on a no win, no fee basis. There are two types of no win no fee agreement. The conditional fee agreement and the damages-based agreement.

  • Conditional fee agreements - If your claim isn't successful, you won't have to pay our costs. If you are successful you pay a 'success fee', which is based on a percentage of our costs. The rest are recovered from the other side or the estate, rather than you personally
  • Damages based agreements โ€“ You don't pay our costs if you lose, and if you win, our costs are recovered by taking a percentage of the award you receive
  • As mentioned above, sometimes an application can be made so that the estate pays the costs of a dispute. This can be helpful where someone has been disinherited and left in financial difficulty.

A difficult time

It's clearly a difficult time, so if you still have any concerns just give us a call or ask a question, it won't cost you, but it might help clear things up a bit.

Get in touch for a chat about how we can help you by filling in our quick, no obligation enquiry form and we will call you back or you can call us directly on freephone: 0808 129 3320.

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Robert Godfrey | Partner, Dispute Resolution | Simpson Millar LLP

Robert Godfrey
Partner, Dispute Resolution

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