Challenging the Will

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Individuals often wish to challenge the validity of a Will because they feel that it is unfair.

When a Will is created, a number of legal formalities must be closely followed. If they are not, the Will may be invalid.

Contesting a Will is a complex legal process with strict time limits. If you think you may have the grounds for contesting a Will, we have a strong track record of success in this area and can offer you tailored expertise to ensure your best interest.

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Guiding you through legal complexities with expert insight

Challenging and defending the validity of a Will is a specialist area of law referred to by lawyers as ‘contentious probate’.

Whether you were expecting to inherit or not, discovering that a Will does not seem to truly reflect the intentions of your loved one can be distressing.

At Barnes Law, we understand that disputes over wills can be emotionally taxing and legally complex, often entangled with sensitive family dynamics.

Our experienced team is here to help you navigate these challenging situations with compassion and expertise.

If your claim is successful, there may be significant consequences. If the court finds that the Will is invalid, for example, the deceased’s estate will be administered according to their previous Will, or according to the rules of intestacy if there was no prior Will. Therefore, seeking expert advice from the offset is paramount.  

Grounds for Challenging the Will

The grounds for contesting the Will are lack of testamentary capacity, lack of execution, lack of knowledge, undue influence (coercion), fraud and forgery.

Revocation is another instance where the Will can be contested. When an individual makes a valid Will, it can only be revoked in three ways: by the testator making another Will, by them signing a revocation provision, or by destruction. If a person has destroyed their Will without telling anybody, this will likely result in confusion after their death. In such cases and provided there is no previous valid Will, there is a presumption that the Will was intentionally destroyed and therefore revoked, leading to the estate being distributed under the rules of intestacy.

Our specialist team will be by your side and can advise you on the evidence required to prove the validity, or invalidity, of a Will, as well as guide you through the relevant procedure at the Probate Registry and any court application in the event of a dispute.

How Barnes Law can help you?

If you find yourself needing to defend a claim being made against you personally, or an estate for which you are an executor, navigating these procedures can be complex, and professional legal guidance is invaluable.

Our team of experts has a wealth of experience successfully challenging Wills and making claims against estates, as well as defending executors and estates against claims.

For a consultation on how we can assist you, please call us on +44 (0) 208 092 2700 or email info@barnes-law.co.uk.

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