I'm a solicitor working in the Will, Trust and Estate Disputes Team in Chichester.
I have experience in assisting both bringing and defending Will validity challenges for:
- Lack of testamentary capacity
- Undue influence
- Fraudulent calumny
- Knowledge and approval.
I also have experience in claims and defending Inheritance Act claims. This is where someone brings a claim as they don't believe that they've received reasonable financial provision under the deceased’s Will. I also have experience in working on Executor dispute cases.
I'm particularly interested in financial abuse cases. Financial abuse can arise when someone has lost the capacity to deal with their Property and Financial Affairs and they have appointed an attorney, under a Lasting Power of Attorney or Enduring Power of Attorney. If the attorney abuses their power and takes advantage of their position, a challenge can be made to the attorney’s decisions and they can be asked to account to the estate for any money they have taken.
What inspired you to get into law?
From a young age, I've always wanted to be in a profession where I can support people in difficult situations and solve problems.
I did work experience at many law firms and also at the Houses of Parliament. Through this experience, I quickly decided that I would be able to help more people as a lawyer than as a politician. I went on to study Law at University, and confirmed my passion for the law while there.
What is the most rewarding aspect of your role?
The most rewarding aspect of my role is definitely helping people who may not have anyone else to help them. It's a brilliant feeling when you can resolve a case and you've helped achieve a successful result that will change your client’s life for the better.
What do you like about working at Irwin Mitchell?
I believe that working at Irwin Mitchell gives me access to a wide range of knowledge and expertise in this area that I wouldn't be able to access at other firms. I feel that I'm constantly learning new skills and I love the support I get from my team.
What do you do away from the office?
I'm a keen netball and badminton player and I play in competitive leagues outside of work. I also love travelling and experiencing different cultures. I'm currently on track to complete the “30 by 30” challenge (to visit 30 countries by the age of 30 and no the UK does not count as four countries for this).
I also enjoy climbing mountains and coastal walks.
“Bethan Smith helped me to defend an inheritance claim. She was always pleasant, helpful and knowledgeable and always available to answer any questions quickly and let me know how the case was progressing while keeping costs as low as possible. I found Bethan and everyone I spoke to at Irwin Mitchell very agreeable.” - 5* Trustpilot review
"Irwin Mitchell were recommended to me by a solicitor friend. After contacting them I had a detailed and helpful initial conversation with Hannah Worricker, who then laid out my options for my case, which involved contesting a will. The case took four years to finally be settled, as there was a considerable amount of evidence to be collected and presented. While Hannah was the associate solicitor who ran the case, she involved Bethan Smith, an Irwin Mitchell solicitor who turned out to be excellent, working at a slightly less expensive rate in order to keep the legal bill more manageable. Bringing a legal case is not cheap and far from risk-free, but Hannah advised me of our situation at every stage of the journey, and Bethan chased and negotiated for me all the way to the final settlement. I would advise anyone finding themselves needing to contest a will to talk to Hannah and Bethan at Irwin Mitchell." - 5* Trustpilot review
"Fantastic service from this firm in a very stressful and uncertain time. I always felt I was getting a balanced view of the chances of success. I would recommend! Irwin Mitchell to anyone. Bethan Smith my main contact in the firm seems to me to be truly exceptional. Margaret Windram, supporting Bethan, was also extremely helpful and reassuring." - 5* Trustpilot review
"The Solicitor who helped me was Bethan Smith in Chichester. She was very sympathetic to my cause and was extremely efficient in the way she handled this distressing situation and in very little time this matter has now been concluded. I can't thank her enough." - 5* Trustpilot review
"Bethan has been nothing short of amazing. She really does know her stuff. Her fees can be on the high end but she is good at what she does." - 5* Trustpilot review