Loughborough probate solicitorsLoughborough probate solicitors

Mc Intosh Fleming provide cheap probate services at just £600 all inclusive for obtaining a grant of probate.

Contesting a will or intestacy

On an application a Judge has power overturn a will or intestacy and to award all or part of the estate to a claimant instead of the beneficiary entitled under the terms of the will or rules of intestacy.

McIntosh Fleming are experts in challenging wills and intestate estates and securing awards in favour of applicants who have been unjustly deprived of their rightful inheritance. We are one of the best Loughborough Probate solicitors.

What legal grounds can you use to contest a will or intestacy?

You can only challenge an inheritance under a will or intestacy if you meet 3 criteria:

  1. You have to come within the class of people allowed to challenge;and
  2. You have to prove the will or intestacy failed to make you reasonable financial provision;
  3. The application must be made within 6 months of probate.

Class of people who can challenge a will or intestacy

You have to come under one of the following categories:

  1. Be married to the deceased;
  2. Divorced from deceased but not remarried;
  3. a cohabitee for 2 years prior to death;
  4. a child of the deceased (of any age including illegitimate and married children);
  5. anybody who was treated by the deceased as a child of the family in relation to any marriage to which the deceased was a party e.g. a step child;
  6. anyone who immediately before the death of the deceased was being maintained wholly or partly by the deceased.

 You have to prove the will or intestacy failed to make “Reasonable Financial Provision”

1. This is from the viewpoint of the court not the deceased.

2. There are 2 grades of provision:

(a) surviving spouse level (excepting judicially separated) – such provision as is reasonable, whether or not needed for  spouses’ maintenance.

(b) everyone else – reasonable provision for his or her maintenance.

3. The judge has to have regard to statutory factors below:

(a) the capital & income of the applicant and future requirements;

(b) the capital & income of any other applicant and future requirements;

(c) the capital & income of any beneficiary and future requirements;

(d) any relationship between the deceased and any applicant or beneficiary requiring recognition by the court e.g. due to moral, informal, customary issues etc.

(e) the wealth left by the deceased;

(f) health of any applicant or beneficiary;

(g) all the circumstances, including conduct of the applicant, beneficiary etc if relevant..

4. Also where a spouse is the applicant these further criteria:

(a) the age of the spouse and how long the matrimony lasted;

(b) the sacrifice of the spouse to the family of the deceased e.g sacrificing a career etc.

(c) the amount a court would have awarded on divorce if the marriage had instead ended that way..

 

5. Special guidelines apply to other classes of applicant.

6. any evidence left by the deceased explaining why he/she failed to make provision to the applicant..

How long have I got to challenge the will/intestacy?

You only have 6 months from grant of probate to issue your application or your claim may be statute barred.

When can the Personal Representatives distribute the estate?

Once 6 months has elapsed it is unlikely a court will permit a claim and therefore the Personal Representatives of the estate can safely distribute without fear of litigation against them personally.

How do you protect your will from being challenged by a relative after you have gone?

Ask the testator to write a statement of his reasons for failing to make provision for anyone and  keep this with the will in the event of a challenge

If you feel you have been unjustly left out of your inheritance then please contact us. We are the foremost Loughborough probate solicitors. Please contact us by calling free on (0800) 1712215 or by e-mailing us.