Contentious Trusts & Probate
Losing a loved one is often a difficult experience which can be made worse for all concerned if a dispute about a Will arises.
The Enoch Evans Contentious Trusts and Probate team specialises in supporting clients with contested probate, guiding individuals through legal difficulties with clear, realistic and reassuring advice.
Our Walsall, Cannock and Sutton Coldfield based solicitors have vast experience dealing with complex will disputes between families, friends and charities, with the aim of delivering a simple to understand and stress-free service. The team appreciates that settling disputes during difficult times can be a sensitive process and so work quickly and efficiently to ensure the best outcome.
Our team understands that no two Will disputes are the same – they can arise from concerns about the way it has been written, or questions surrounding the wishes of the loved one that has passed away.
On other occasions, a breakdown in communication can halt the administration of an Estate. The Enoch Evans team will make this area of law as simple as possible for clients, helping them to overcome any challenges they face.
Our Contentious Trusts and Probate team have expertise:
Challenging a Will
Sometimes the content of a Will can come as a surprise to bereaved loved ones. Sometimes it will not meet with the wishes that the Deceased had expressed to their family.
If you believe that a Will does not meet with those expectations, or if you feel it is wrong or misses out you or others, there may be a way of challenging the content of that Will. We have a team of specialists here to help.
Inheritance (Family & Dependents) Inheritance Act 1975 claims
A Will can be entirely correct, drafted in line with the Deceased’s wishes and entirely properly, but can still be challenged if it failed to take account of material circumstances or people that depended on the Deceased during their lifetime. Alternatively, it is possible that an individual dies without making a Will, meaning that they are ‘intestate’. Their estate may not therefore be distributed fairly.
In such cases, it is possible to make a claim against the Deceased’s Estate requesting that the Court make adequate provision for that person.
If you feel that a Deceased’s Will has not made adequate provision for you, or you are an Executor or Administrator of an Estate and someone has made such a claim, call our Contentious Trusts and Probate Team for advice.
Issuing a Caveat
In either of the cases above, or in circumstances where you are concerned as to the validity of a Will, it is essential that steps are taken to prevent the Executors or Administrators (in the case of there being no Will) from applying to deal with the Estate. This is a process known as lodging a Caveat.
If you feel that an Estate is not going to be distributed fairly and wish to lodge a Caveat, or you are attempting to obtain a grant of Probate or Letters of Administration and have received notification of a Caveat having being lodged, speak to the Contentious Trusts and Probate Team
Removing an Executor or Administrator
If you feel that an Estate is not being handled appropriately by an Executor or an Administrator, it is possible to apply to the Court to remove them. If you are concerned as to the conduct of either an Executor or an Administrator, please contact the Contentious Trusts and Probate Team
A Trust is a way of managing assets, be they money, investments, land or buildings.
A Trust is normally created for the benefit of a or multiple Beneficiaries, and a Trustee is appointed to look after the Trust and manage it. The terms of a Trust can be different in each case, but if you are a Trustee that is being challenged by the Beneficiaries, or you are a Beneficiary that feels that the Trustees are not looking after the Trust or your interest in it, then it is important that you obtain clear and concise advice on your rights so that the relationship does not irretrievably break down unnecessarily.
There are sadly cases where an individual loses their ability to make a Will or change their pre-existing Will because of a lack of capacity, whether that arises out of illness or injury.
An individual may not have a Will, or in other cases, there may have been a change to circumstances that renders the Will previously made by the individual inappropriate, such as a family disagreement or death.
It may be possible and appropriate to ask the Court to write one for them to ensure that their assets are distributed in their best interests. The process is overseen by the Official Solicitor to ensure that the Will sought is right in all of the circumstances. We can guide you through that process and make applications to the Court of Protection on your behalf. Such an application is often time sensitive and the team has a great deal of experience in successfully making such applications and obtaining statutory Wills without delay.
Claims made before the Court of Protection
The Contentious Trusts and Probate Team in our Cannock, Walsall and Sutton Coldfield offices have expertise in making and defending applications to challenge decisions made by Attorneys and Deputies on behalf of individuals who have lost capacity.
Concern may have been raised by a loved one regarding the use of funds, or the treatment that the individual is receiving. We can guide you through the complex and emotive process.
Claims in professional negligence arising out of a Will being drafted incorrectly
If you are making or contemplating a claim against a Will, regard should be had to the professional services and advice given to the Deceased when that Will was made.
It is possible that the Deceased was advised incorrectly by an Accountant, financial advisor or Solicitor and we can review the prospects of making a claim against that individual or company and help you recover compensation.
Speak to our Contentious Trusts and Probate solicitors today
To speak to Contentious Trusts and Probate solicitors in Walsall, Sutton Coldfield, Cannock and the wider West Midlands region, please refer to the contact details for each location, email firstname.lastname@example.org or, alternatively, fill in the enquiry form on the right-hand side of the page to ask us a question.