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Will dispute lawyers

Being excluded or left disappointed by the will of a loved one is not uncommon. Our expert will dispute lawyers can explain the grounds on which a will can be disputed, talk you through the process of contesting a will and guide you through the steps to resolving your claim.

The terms of a will may sometimes come as a surprise. Something might look odd or be contrary to statements made to you or to others. For example:

  • family members who expect to inherit might not be included in the will,
  • the will may benefit people with little or no connection to the deceased,
  • the signature looks wrong,
  • or the will might have been prepared when the person was unwell or frail or shortly before their death.

How our will dispute lawyers can help

We understand that disputing a will isn’t something entered into lightly. It normally involves family members or those close to you. We will handle your will dispute with care and sensitivity.

We will work to understand your objectives and priorities, placing these at the centre of what we do, and guide you through your will claim to ensure it is resolved on the best terms possible.

We will talk openly about fees and work with you to understand the best funding option for your will claim. In appropriate cases, we can offer deferred payment and “no win, no fee” agreements.

All our will dispute solicitors belong to the Association of Contentious Trust and Probate Specialists (ACTAPS). The team and many individuals and are top ranked in leading legal directories, including the Legal 500 and Chambers High Net Worth guide. You will be in expert hands.

Our will dispute lawyers regularly advise on:

  • contesting a will
  • claims asserting a lack of mental capacity
  • requests to trustees for disclosure of information
  • claims involving ambiguous, or poorly written wills
  • allegations of fraud or forgery to obtain the testator’s signature
  • allegations of undue influence
  • improper execution of a will

Who we work with

Our expert specialist team of will dispute solicitors, while based in Tunbridge Wells, Kent and London, are frequently asked to represent clients based throughout England and Wales and internationally.

We work in a way that best suits you, whether in person at our offices, at your home, or via video conference.

Contact us if you would like to discuss contesting a will.

Meet the team

Our will disputes experience

Our client successes

  • Case study
  • Defending a high profile Inheritance Act claim against a £7m estate.

    3 min

    Anthony Shearer left a £7m estate to his surviving spouse. His two daughters, dissatisfied with the will, initiated a claim for financial provision, with help from Cripps, our legal team defended the estate.

    Read the case study
  • Case study
  • Will dispute

    3 min

    Challenging a Will that disinherits the family.

    Read the case study
  • Case study
  • Will construction dispute

    1 min

    Acting for a minor in respect of a Will with ambiguous terms.

    Read the case study

    How we made a difference

    Frequently asked questions

    There are three main grounds for contesting a will:
    1. by disputing the validity of a will - a validity claim
    2. by asserting that the will (or the intestacy rules) does not make proper financial provision for you
    3. by claiming that the will is overridden by a promise made to you
    Will disputes can also arise from the manner in which an estate is administered.  
    The grounds for disputing the validity of a will include that the person making the will, known as the ‘testator’:
    • has not correctly executed the will
    • did not have the mental capacity to do so
    • did not have sufficient knowledge of the terms of the will
    • had pressure applied on them
    • was provided with false information which made them include or exclude someone.
    Contesting a will can seem daunting, especially if you are grieving for a loved one. If you have concerns about will disputes, it is important to take initial steps to protect your position. This may include registering a caveat, which prevents a grant of probate from being made. A grant of probate is the authority to distribute the testator’s estate in accordance with the will. A ‘caveat’ provides time for you to instruct a solicitor specialising in will disputes. They will investigate and advise on the merits of your will claim.
    The cost of undertaking initial investigations into will disputes are modest. If the claim has sufficient merit, further costs will normally be incurred. Most claims challenging a will do not reach trial. They are often settled by agreement or following mediation. In many cases, we can undertake initial investigations under fixed fees or using “no win, no fee” agreements. Contact us to discuss our payment terms.    

    Contact us

    If you have a question or need advice, please let us know how we can help.