If you’ve recently suffered a family bereavement, it’s likely that this time will be difficult and stressful. This is particularly the case if you or someone you love has been cut out of the will. If you’re considering contesting a will, it’s important not to take this decision lightly. It may have a significant impact on your familial relationships as emotions are often running high in the event of a death in the family. However, if you believe that the will is invalid for any reason, it’s important to consult a solicitor as quickly as possible.
Should I Challenge the Will?
You should consider challenging a will if there are suspicious circumstances surrounding it’s preparation. An example of this is if someone who advised in the will’s preparation was given a large gift in the will. You can challenge a will if it has been executed in an invalid manner, not properly witnessed or contained factual errors. For a will for be valid, it must be signed by someone (or on behalf of someone) who is in full possession of their mental faculties and knows exactly what they are signing. The testator must understand the contents of and consequences of their will, and know the value and extent of their estate. If the recently deceased was suffering from a disease like Alzheimer’s or under the influence of medication that prevented them from thinking clearly, the will can be rendered invalid.
How can a Will be Contested?
Your chosen solicitors will investigate the circumstances that surrounded the preparation of the will. They will also enter a ‘caveat’ at the Probate Registry to prevent a grant of probate being taken out while the will is being investigated. You should get started on the legal proceedings as quickly as possible to prevent the estate being split up and certain parties disappearing with their gifts of money or property. It’s likely that you won’t know if your claim is likely to be successful until all the facts have been examined in detail. This can take a great deal of time if the estate in question is particularly large.
The Cost Involved in Contesting a Will
It’s important to be aware that contesting a will can be a lengthy and expensive process. Probate actions can cost under £10,000 and reach up to £250,000 and beyond for very large estates. It’s essential that you are prepared for the cost of losing, because not all probate actions end in success. If you are considering contesting a will, contact a specialist legal firm like Will Claim Solicitors.