Our dedicated team of solicitors can provide you with expert legal advice if you are concerned about an invalid will.
SOLVING PERSONAL LEGAL MATTERS
If you suspect that a Will is invalid due to lack of capacity, undue influence or other factors, our solicitors can help you contest it. We have extensive experience in dealing with invalid Wills and can provide practical and effective solutions to protect your interests.
An invalid will is a Will that does not meet the legal requirements for being considered a valid Will. An invalid will is not legally binding and cannot be used to decide who should administer an estate of a deceased person or how to distribute their estate. A Will can be judged to be invalid if it was not created in compliance with the legal formalities, it does not say what the deceased wanted, the deceased did not have the mental capacity to make the Will, or they were coerced into making the Will. A will can also be challenged on grounds that it is a forgery.
The validity of a Will has an impact on whether or not an estate can be distributed in accordance to its contents. In some cases, you may need to dispute a Will if you are alarmed about its validity and in this instance, services from Forbes Solicitors can be of assistance. Our specialist Dispute Resolution team are experienced in this complex legal area, providing the level of legal support required to meet your needs.
A Will is invalid if it was not made voluntarily, the person making it did not have mental capacity, it was not properly signed and witnessed, or if there is evidence of fraud, undue influence or coercion. It can also be invalidated if a later Will is found that revokes the previous one.
An invalid Will usually surfaces after the death of an individual, causing additional issues for those who are going through the grieving process. The invalidity of a Will can also cause family feuds and problems before the estate is distributed; especially if someone disagrees with the contents of the Will.
There are a number of reasons why a Will can be invalid, such as:
Yes, a Will the does not reflect accurately what the decesaed wanted can be recitified. This involves applying to the court to correct errors or omissions in the Will. However, rectification can only be granted in certain circumstances, such as where there has been a clerical error or a mistake in the drafting of the Will. It is important to seek legal advice if you believe a Will needs to be rectified.
The Court is able to correct or amend a Will if an application is submitted outlining the known problems. However, depending on the nature of the case and feelings towards the Will, a dispute claim may be raised against it. It's recommended that you seek legal support if you are raising a dispute against a Will in order to ensure you are fairly represented and get the end result you're hoping for.
We have a dedicated team of solicitors who can provide you with expert legal advice if you are concerned about an invalid Will or have a contesting a will claim. We understand this may be a sensitive time for all involved, which is why we're committed to ensuring the process is as straightforward as possible.
At Forbes Solicitors our solicitors who specialise in invalid wills are dedicated to providing exceptional legal services to clients who have concerns about the validity of a will. With years of experience and a deep understanding of the law, our team is committed to helping clients navigate complex legal issues with ease. We take a personalised approach to every case, ensuring that each client receives the attention and support they need to achieve their goals. Trust us to provide you with the guidance and representation you need to protect your interests and secure your future. We offer a range of price and payment options and ensure we are transparent on costs, whilst providing excellent service levels.
Our solicitors who specialise in Will validity disputes assist clients who are pursuing a challenge to the validity of a will, or who are defending a claim to challenge the validity of a will.
Our lawyers who specialise in will validity disputes can help by reviewing and assessing the validity of a will, identifying any potential issues or inconsistencies, and providing legal advice on how to rectify the situation. We can also assist in challenging a will if it is believed to be invalid, or defend a challenge on behalf of an executor or beneficiary.
In order to assess the merits of a validity challenge we need to carry out an Initial Case Assessment (ICA) at a fixed cost of £2,000 plus VAT. This includes the cost to:
There will be an additional fee of £600 +VAT to be paid to an expert medical advisor who will review medical records, the Will file and the evidence of witnesses who knew the deceased limited to a maximum of 150 pages and speak with us for 30 minutes by telephone to discuss whether the deceased had capacity to make a Will and/or was someone who was susceptible to being unduly influenced.
We will also ask the deceased's GP to provide us with their view about their testamentary capacity when the deceased gave instructions and executed their Will. The GP may charge for this and, if so, we will pass the GP's charges on to you.
Thereafter, we will decide whether we are able to act under a no win, no fee agreement.
Grounds for challenging the validity of a Will in UK law include lack of capacity, undue influence, fraud, and failure to comply with legal formalities. Lack of capacity refers to the deceased's inability to understand the nature and effect of their Will. Undue influence occurs when someone exerts pressure on the testator to make a certain provision in their Will. Fraud involves deception or misrepresentation in the making of the Will. Failure to comply with legal formalities means the will does not meet the requirements set out in the Wills Act 1837.
To check if a Will is valid you need to ensure that the Will was executed in compliance with the legal formalities, the person making the Will had the capacity to make the Will, and was not under any undue influence or pressure. If there are any doubts about the validity of the Will, it may need to be contested in court.
Yes, a Will can be invalidated if it was not signed in front of witnesses because it will not have been executed in compliance with the requirements of the Wills Act 1837. The Act requires that the testator (person making the Will) signs the Will in the presence of two witnesses who must also sign the Will in the presence of the testator. Failure to comply with these requirements may render the Will invalid.
Yes, a Will can be invalidated if the testator lacked mental capacity at the time of signing. Under UK law, a person must have the mental capacity to understand the nature and effect of making a Will, the extent of their property, and the claims of those who might expect to benefit from the Will. If it is found that the testator lacked mental capacity at the time of signing, the Will can be challenged and declared invalid.
Yes, a will can be invalidated if the testator was unduly influenced by someone else. Under UK law, if it can be proven that the testator was coerced or manipulated into making certain provisions in their will, the court may declare the will invalid. The burden of proof lies with the person challenging the will to demonstrate that undue influence was exerted on the testator.
Yes, a Will can be invalidated if it was not properly executed according to UK law. The Will must be in writing and signed by the testator in the presence of two witnesses who also sign the Will. Failure to meet these requirements can result in the Will being declared invalid.
If a Will is found to be invalid, the deceased's estate will be distributed according to the previous Will and, if there isn't one, the rules of intestacy. The intestacy rules means that the estate will be divided among the deceased's closest living relatives, as determined by law. The deceased's wishes, as expressed in the invalid Will, will not be taken into account.
Yes, an invalid Will can be contested. If there are concerns about the validity of a Will, it can be challenged in court. This may happen if the Will was not properly executed, if the person making the Will did not have the mental capacity to do so, or if there are suspicions of fraud or undue influence.
Yes, a Will can be contested after probate has been granted. However, if a grant Is issued before a claim is made, there is a danger that the assets of the estate will have already been distributed in compliance with the invalid Will.
There is no time limit for bring a case to challenge the validity of a Will. However, delay may result in important evidence being destroyed or lost. The court may also not be willing to allow a claim brought if there has been extensive delay because it is not fair to the defendant that they be met with a claim.
It is not mandatory to hire a solicitor to contest an invalid Will, but it is highly recommended. Contesting a Will can be a complex legal process, and a solicitor can provide valuable guidance and representation. Additionally, if the case goes to court, a solicitor will be necessary to present the case effectively. It is important to choose a solicitor with experience in will disputes and a good track record of success.