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Contentious Probate

If a dispute becomes contentious, we have a team of experienced litigators who can provide dedicated advice.

What we can do for you

Contentious Probate is a term used for any dispute relating to the administration of a deceased person’s estate and so can encompass a broad range of disputes. With more complex family arrangements on the increase (such as second marriages, co-habitation, step-children and parents, longer life expectancy), we have a dedicated team who understand the complexities, the sensitivities and aim to resolve disputes quickly and cost effectively. We work to resolve disputes quickly and cost effectively.

Preliminary Steps

When you are thinking about attacking a Will or a Codicil, it is important to consider what steps need to be taken immediately to protect your position.

  

We can help with the following:

  

  • Putting in place a caveat to prevent a grant of probate being sealed without notice to the caveator
  • Seeking the assistance of the Probate Registry by way of a citation - to accept or refuse a grant of probate, to take probate or to propound a Will
  • Obtaining information from the Solicitor or Will writer who prepared the Will or Codicil in dispute
  • Obtaining a Freezing Injunction to restrain a party from removing assets out of the country or from dealing with assets

Contesting a Will

Wills can be challenged for any one of more of the following reasons:

  

  • Lack of proper formalities
  • Lack of capacity and mental disorders
  • Lack of knowledge and approval
  • Fraud and forgery
  • Undue influence
  • Subsequent revocation

  
If you think a Will is open to challenge or if you are an Executor on the receiving end of a claim, we will help you through this process.

Wealth Information Hub

Our information hub provides you with a range of resources to help you with your EMW Wealth journey. For more information please click on the link below:

Wealth Information Hub

Inheritance Act Claims

Broadly speaking the Inheritance (provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 gives the Court the power to order financial provision from an estate to someone who might reasonably have expected to be a beneficiary (or a larger beneficiary).

  

There are certain categories of applicant as follows:

  

  • Surviving spouse or civil partner
  • Former surviving spouse or civil partner (if not remarried)
  • A person who has cohabited with the testator for a period of at least 2 years immediately prior to his/her death
  • Children (both adults and minors)
  • Any other person who was treated as a dependent ie was maintained by the deceased

  
Please note that there is a 6 month deadline from the date on which probate is granted for bringing an Inheritance Act claim so time is of the essence. Contact us as soon as possible if you think you may have such a claim.

Trust Disputes

A trust allows you to invest and protect your assets for multiple future generations. Chosen trustees have a duty of care to those beneficiaries to act in their best interests and with absolute honesty and integrity.

  

We can help if a trustee has breached that duty. Examples would be where a trustee has:

  

  • Failed to obey the directions of the trust
  • Failed to act impartially
  • Mismanaged the trust
  • Failed to supply information to beneficiaries to which they are entitled
  • Failed to pay trust income to a beneficiary
  • Allowed a co-trustee to act in breach of trust

Who we are

If you can't find what you're looking for or would like to talk to us in more detail, please contact Karen Young, our Contentious Probate specialist. We'd love to hear from you!

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