Challenging Wills or Inheritance

When someone has made a Will setting how they intend their assets to be divided, there are limited circumstances in which their wishes can be challenged or altered. 

Sometimes, the circumstances when the will was drafted are suspicious, there may be questions about whether the deceased had capacity to make a will, or perhaps there is a concern that they were influenced by someone or didn’t understand what they were doing.  In those circumstances, whether you are the executor or a beneficiary you may need to seek expert advice. 

A beneficiary who did not receive sufficient maintenance from the estate then they may be entitled to make a claim for a larger share under the provisions of the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependents) Act 1975.  This type of claim may arise either because the deceased did not make sufficient provision in their will or because they did not make a will at all and died intestate.  This type of claim is frequently made by a long term partner or cohabitee who is not entitled to any share of the estate at all under the intestacy rules.   

A claim under the inheritance act needs to be made within 6 months of the date that the Grant of Probate was issued.  If you believe that a will is invalid you can take steps to prevent anyone obtaining the Grant of Probate, by entering a caveat or a standing search at the probate registry.

For more information contact rw@startpointlaw.co.uk or telephone 01548 288008