Contesting a Will is never easy. Our Contentious Probate team specialise in contesting Probate effectively with minimal stress and friction.
What is Probate and when is it required?
In order to begin the process of distributing a person’s estate after death in accordance with their Will, the Executor of the Will is legally required to seek a Grant of Probate. A Grant of Probate is only not required in rare cases; we will be able to advise you further regarding these.
When a dispute arises regarding the validity or contents of a Will, or how the deceased’s estate is distributed after death, this is known as Contentious Probate.
Can I contest Probate?
To contest Probate, you must either be a beneficiary under the current or previous Will, a family member, owed money by the deceased, financially dependent on the deceased, or you were promised something that was not granted in the Will. If you are unsure if you are eligible to challenge a Will, our Contentious Probate solicitors will be able to advise you.
Contesting Probate prior to it being granted
If you have reason to believe that a Will may be invalid, then it is important to act as quickly as possible, ideally before Probate has been granted and the estate has begun to be distributed. As a first step, you will need to enter a Caveat to the Probate Registry in order to prevent a Grant of Probate from being granted whilst the Will dispute is resolved. A Caveat lasts six months, with the potential to extend it for a further six months, during which time it is up to the Executor and submitter of the Caveat to come to a resolution.
Our experienced Probate solicitors can help you submit a Caveat and work with you to resolve your Will dispute in the most amicable way possible.
Contesting Probate after Probate has been granted
Depending on your reason for contesting Probate, you may be subject to certain time limits to make a claim after Probate has been granted. If you are making a claim under the Inheritance Act 1975, you only have six months from the date of Probate being granted to contest a Will, whilst claims relating to fraud have no time limit at all.
Whatever type of Will dispute claim you are making, we recommend that you act as soon as possible in order to provide evidence and avoid difficulties that arise when parts of the deceased’s estate have already been distributed. Contact our specialist Probate solicitors for expert legal advice on how best to proceed.
Contesting Probate when there is no Will
When a person dies without leaving a valid Will, their estate will be divided up according to the ‘Rules of Intestacy’. However, it is understandable that these rules may not always reflect the deceased’s wishes or any verbal promises they may have made during their lifetime.
Why Choose Trethowans?
If you believe that you have been left out of the inheritance or are a dependent not financially provided for, our Contentious Probate solicitors can help with contesting Probate in cases with no Will. With offices in Bournemouth, Poole, Salisbury, Southampton and Winchester, you can trust our team to work with your best interests at heart. Get in touch today on 0800 2800 421.