If you’ve been left out of a Will, haven’t been left as much as you expected, or think the Will is wrong in some way, you might be able to contest it.

Contesting a Will can feel daunting, but our Will disputes solicitors have the expertise to support you through the process.

We can also help you if you’re an executor defending against a Will dispute.

For a consultation about your case, call us on 0345 604 4895 or contact us online.

What Are The Grounds For Contesting A Will?

You may have grounds for disputing a Will if:

  • The Will was invalid in some way, perhaps because the deceased lacked mental capacity to make it, was improperly influenced by another person, or because the Will was not properly signed or witnessed.
  • The Will was forged.
  • You were not properly provided for in the Will, and were financially dependent on the deceased. In these cases you might be able to make a claim under the Inheritance Act.
  • The deceased promised you something before they died, but did not put it in their Will.
  • Someone is asking the Court of Protection to make a statutory Will for a person who lacks mental capacity, but you don’t think it reflects their wishes.

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How To Contest A Will

If you’re thinking about disputing a Will, it’s important to seek legal advice from our solicitors as soon as possible. The time limits for making certain types of claim can be quite short, so acting quickly will help make sure you don’t lose your right to claim.

Will disputes or claims against an estate can often be resolved out of court, using processes such as mediation. If we do have to go to court, we’ll be here to support you every step of the way.

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What’s The Time Limit For Contesting A Will?

This will depend on the type of claim you’re making. You may need to start your claim within six months of probate being granted.

If more than six months have passed, you’ll probably need to apply to the court for permission to make your claim.

If you want to dispute whether a Will is valid, there is no time limit to making a claim.

In all cases it’s best to investigate whether you have a claim as early as possible.

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How Much Does It Cost?

The majority of our clients pay privately for our expert advice. In certain circumstances, it may be possible for us to offer you a funding arrangement. However, this is subject to assessment (which will incur a charge) and at our discretion. Funding may include:

  • Private fee paying (most common)
  • Legal Expenses Insurance –check your policies of home/car insurance to see if you have cover
  • Payment on conclusion
  • Conditional Fee Arrangement.

The options available may vary depending on certain factors. These include:

  • The type of claim
  • The value (to ensure costs remain proportionate)
  • The number of parties and the risks we identify.

If appropriate, we'll discuss any options available for your particular claim at the outset.

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Why Choose Us?

Our Wills, Trusts and Estate Disputes team is the largest in the country, operating out of offices across the UK. We can deal with disputes of all shapes and sizes, including those that involve international assets and rural property.

Contesting a Will can be a sensitive matter between family and loved ones, and may be even more challenging if the estate is large or complex. We have the expertise to guide you through the process, and will always strive to resolve your dispute as smoothly as possible.

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Contact Us

Call us today on 0345 604 4895 or contact us online.

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Contesting A Will - More Information

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My legal team has held my hand throughout, they have been incredibly patient and understanding"

Joy Williams, client

Frequently Asked Questions

What Makes A Will Invalid?

For a Will to be legally valid, there are some conditions that must be in place:

  • The person making the Will must be of ‘sound mind’ (read more about testamentary capacity)
  • They must act of their own free will and fully understand the contents of the Will (read more about undue influence)
  • The correct legal procedure must be followed when the Will is drawn up – this is known as ‘due execution’.

If the Will is declared invalid because of a lack of due execution, you may be able to make a professional negligence claim against the Solicitor or Will writer who dealt with it.

For more information on what makes a Will valid or not, visit our page on the Grounds For Contesting A Will. Or call the team on 0345 604 4895 to speak to one of our experts today.

Can I Contest A Will If I’m Not Named In It?

If you haven’t been named in the Will, in many cases you could still make a claim. Whether it is done deliberately or not, excluding someone from a Will doesn’t automatically mean they can’t inherit.

Reasons for being left out of the Will could include:

  • The deceased was living with a new partner but hadn’t updated their Will to reflect this
  • They were influenced to change their Will before they died
  • They had become estranged from their children and didn’t want them to inherit.

Some people, including spouses, partners and children, may be entitled to some form of financial provision under the Inheritance Act 1975.

You could also make a claim if the deceased had promised you something while they were alive, but then failed to put this in their Will. Find out more on our Pre-death Agreements page.

Call us at any time on 0345 604 4895 or fill out our online form and we’ll call you back.

What Is The Difference Between Contesting A Will And Contentious Probate?

Contentious probate refers to any dispute about the administration of a deceased person’s estate, rather than the contents of the Will or whether or not it is valid. Contentious probate could involve a dispute about:

  • The value of assets
  • The interpretation of a Will
  • How the estate should be divided up when there is no Will
  • Dealing with an executor who has mismanaged the estate
  • Disagreements between those named in the Will.

Head to our Contentious Probate page for more information – or give us a call today on 0345 604 4895 to talk to one of the team. Alternatively, message us online and we’ll call you back.

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