Wills & estate administration

Making a will is one of the most positive things you can do for your family's future. Planning can ensure the best possible outcome for the generations to come.

A will gives you control over the future of your assets and possessions, avoiding disputes or misunderstandings. Making the right choices depends on clear, practical advice.

Our team has a depth of experience and offers responsible, honest and friendly guidance on preparing or updating your will.

You can see our prices for Estate Administration by clicking this link.

We can help you with:

Contact us if you would like a free initial appointment to discuss any of these issues.

Wills and Estate Administration in Bournemouth, Poole, Christchurch, Ringwood and the New Forest

We have offices in Christchurch. Our Wills & Estate Administration Team also covers Bournemouth, Poole, Ringwood and the New Forest, with the majority of our clients located in the Bournemouth and Poole area.

If you live in Bournemouth or Poole:

Please do not be put off by our location and please do not hesitate to contact us. Our wills and estate administration lawyers will be very happy to speak with you.

The service is second to none, good value and worthy of the highest  recommendation. I appreciate your patience and efficiency.

Ask us at Frettens

Q. Can you contest a will?
Q. What are the grounds for contesting a will?
Q. Is it hard to contest a will?
Q. How can I contest a will?
Q. Who pays for contesting a will?
Q. Can you contest a will after probate?
Q. How long does it take to contest a will?

Q. Can you contest a will?

The answer to this question is yes, if there are grounds to do so. 

Whilst someone’s wishes upon their death are of paramount importance, the courts do consider the needs of others known to the deceased who may be disappointed by the contents of the will.  It may therefore be possible to make a claim for financial provision from the estate of the deceased. 

In addition to this, there may be concerns as to the contents or the circumstances surrounding the making of the will, which invalidates it.

Q. What are the grounds for contesting a will?

Grounds for contesting a will due to validity. The other grounds the court will consider when looking at whether a will is valid include:

  • Mistake or error in the drafting of the will.
  • If there is evidence that any pressure was placed on the person making the will as to its contents. Do you have suspicions regarding the contents or making of the will?
  • Doubts as to the will makers mental capacity or their understanding of the contents of their will or their assets at the time they made their will.
  • Proprietary estoppel.  Have you been promised an inheritance, acted to your detriment as a result of that promise and then found out that you have been left nothing from the estate?
  • The will has not been signed properly or there were not the required number of witnesses present.

Q. Is it hard to contest a will?

The answer to this question will depend on the facts of each individual matter. We offer a free, no obligation initial consultation and can advise you whether we consider that there are sufficient grounds to make a claim.  You can then consider your options.

Q. How can I contest a will?

If we consider that there are sufficient grounds to dispute the validity of a will then we would initially look to settle the claim through correspondence and mediation. 

If this is not possible, as a last resort, it would be necessary to commence court proceedings.  We can consider various payment options when dealing with disputed will cases including deferring payment until the outcome of the case where the merits allow.

Disputing a will is never easy as we understand that you are grieving a loved one and embarking on litigation.  Our team are sympathetic to the circumstances surrounding these types of dispute and can guide you through these stressful times.

Q. Who pays for contesting a will?

The courts have a wide discretion when looking at costs for contested wills.  The standard costs awards are:

  • Costs can be ordered to be paid from the estate
  • The losing party could be ordered to pay the winners costs
  • In some instances, both parties will bear their own costs

Q. Can you contest a will after probate?

Yes, you can contest a will after probate has been granted, however there is a strict time limit on claims

Q. How long does it take to contest a will?

If you are claiming financial provision then there is a strict 6-month deadline from the date of the grant of probate. If you think you have been left out of a will, but have a financial need that should be considered then the sooner you act the better. 

For some other claims such as validity issues, you have a longer period but it is always best to act quickly.  We can advise you on time limits in relation to your particular dispute over the will.