If you’ve been left out of a Will, or not been left as much as you need, you may be able to make a claim under the Inheritance Act. Our solicitors can help you make an Inheritance Act claim, or defend one if your inheritance is being threatened by a claim.

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

What Is The Inheritance Act?

A person is entitled to leave their estate to whoever they want. However, there are some people who might reasonably expect to have a share of it.

The Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 is a law to protect people who are financially dependent on another person when they die. It means that some dependants can claim against a Will that doesn’t provide a reasonable amount of inheritance for them.

People who are covered by the Inheritance Act can include:

  • A spouse or civil partner.
  • Children (both minors or adults), including adopted children or someone who has been treated as a child of the marriage (step-children for instance).
  • A former spouse or civil partner – if they have not remarried.
  • Someone living continually with the deceased for at least two years before their death.
  • Any person being financially maintained in some way by them.

Back to top

When Can You Make An Inheritance Act Claim?

Our specialist solicitors could help you make an Inheritance Act claim if:

  • The deceased didn’t leave a valid Will (this is known as intestacy)
  • You’ve been left out of the Will
  • You’ve not been left as much as you need.

Back to top

Inheritance Act Claim Time Limits

You have six months to make an Inheritance Act claim, starting from the date probate was granted.

In some circumstances you may be able to apply to the court for an extension, so it’s still worth contacting us if you’re out of time but you think you might have a claim.

Back to top

How Much Does It Cost?

Some of the Inheritance Act claims our solicitors handle are on a no win no fee basis. This means that there’s no upfront cost, and that you only pay anything if your claim is successful.

As well as no win no fee, we offer a range of other ways to pay, including:

  • Legal Expenses Insurance (which you may already have as part of a home insurance policy)
  • Payment on conclusion
  • On a monthly basis.

We’ll always try and tailor the method of paying to your circumstances where possible.

Back to top

Why Choose Us?

Whether you’re making a claim under the Inheritance Act or defending one, our solicitors can help. We have the largest Will, Trust and Estate Disputes team in the country and we specialise in dealing with complex estates of many different sizes and value.

We understand how sensitive inheritance disputes can be and work towards amicable resolutions wherever possible. Our lawyers are expert negotiators and mediators, and will always try to settle claims out of court with a minimum of fuss. However, if it comes to it, we’re experienced taking claims through the court process and will support you every step of the way.

Back to top

Contact Us

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

Leading team of experienced and knowledgeable lawyers
National coverage throughout the UK
Variety of funding options available
Skilled negotiators and mediators

0370 1500 100

Or we can call you back at a time of your choice

Phone lines are open 24/7, 365 days a year

Inheritance Act Claims- More Information

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

Joy Williams, client

Frequently Asked Questions

What Are The Common Grounds For Making A Claim?

There are many different reasons for making a claim under the Inheritance Act, and each case must be considered on its own terms. However, some of the common circumstances include:

  • An estranged child or spouse has been left without financial provision
  • The financial provision made for someone named in the Will is insufficient for their needs
  • A person’s financial needs have changed, either before or after the deceased’s death, and the Will does not recognise this change in circumstances
  • If the deceased died without a Will, any partner living with them would not automatically inherit, as the intestacy rules do not include provision for unmarried partners. Find out more about contesting probate where there is no Will.

In some cases it may also be that all parties agree that the Will should be adjusted, and just need legal advice to work out the exact details. This can be common if children are involved or where there are issues regarding potential tax consequences.

If you’re unsure whether or not you have a claim, our specialist team are here to advise you. Call today on 0345 604 4895 or fill out our online form and we’ll call you back.

What Will The Court Take Into Account In An Inheritance Act Claim?

There are a number of things a court must consider when reviewing a claim under the Inheritance Act. These include:

  • Your financial needs and resources
  • The size and nature of the estate
  • What obligations and responsibilities the deceased had to you
  • Any disabilities you have, whether physical or mental, that make financial provision necessary
  • The needs and resources of those named in the Will and any others who have claims on the estate.

If you’re making a claim as a spouse or civil partner, the court will also take into consideration things such as how long you were together.

They might also look at other relevant factors, such as the conduct of the parties. Each case is different and there is no blanket rule for who is entitled to what.

We understand that these claims come at a time that is already emotionally demanding, and by their very nature can be deeply personal. We have the experience and expertise to support you through the process and ensure you get the best outcome possible.

Call our team today on 0345 604 4895 or fill out our online form and we’ll call you back.

Who Can Claim Under The Inheritance Act?

Inheritance Act claims are decided on a case by case basis and depend on the particular circumstances of the applicant and their relationship to the deceased, as well as the details of the estate itself.

In general, children, partners, and any other dependants of the deceased might all expect reasonable provision from the estate. ‘Children’ can include step-children, as well as anyone who was treated as a child of the family, even if they aren't related. 

Your relationship to the deceased will also determine what you are entitled to and the level of financial need you must prove. While spouses and civil partners do not have to show evidence of financial need, children and other dependants do have to. They are then entitled ‘reasonable provision’ for their maintenance.

If you’re unsure of whether or not you have a valid claim, we urge you to get in touch today – the time restrictions for making a claim under the Inheritance Act are very strict.

Call to speak to one of the team on 0345 604 4895 or fill out our online form and we’ll call you back.

Awards & Accreditations

We're always proud to be recognised for the work we do for our clients and have been named as a leading firm in the latest legal guides - which provide information and recommendations about lawyers and law firms in the UK.

Private Client Team of the Year - Legal Business Awards 2018
Chambers & Partners 2020 logo
Logical and Practical Approach
A well-structured team which benefits from a robust leadership - they take a logical and practical approach to problem solving"
Robust Leadership
A very strong team"

What Our Clients Say

We truly value and appreciate the feedback we receive from our clients, as we look to improve the services we offer on an ongoing basis.

Read More Feedback
Very impressed

I am so happy i chose Irwin Mitchell as my solicitors, they have done nothing but help me threw my recovery since my tragic accident, I am still recovering and they do their absolute best to make my life easier…

Kayley hicken
Sheffield conveyancers are simply the best!

Fast friendly and efficient service from Sheffield team all dealt with electronically due to distance with buying on south coast... The price quoted was fair, fixed and compared favourably against other large firms. Would definitely use again and recommend to anyone.

Medical Negligence Solicitors

I would highly recommend this firm. My medical negligence claim was handled very well by my solicitors Margaret Ryan and Rebecca Haigh. They have kept me well informed…


Our Offices

Our offices are located in major cities throughout the UK and have excellent transport links.