Will Dispute Archives - MLP Law

Why a £59 Facebook Will Isn’t the Answer

“You are too expensive – I can get a Will for £59 on Facebook.”

Perceptions needs to change. A will should not be cheap – you do not want it to be cheap. 

This is a document that dictates who the guardians of your children are and who cares for them if you are not here.  Think about that.  This is a document that deals with every single item that you own. Think about that.   

Your house, your car, your jewellery, your investments, your money in the bank, your shares in the business… EVERYTHING. Think about what they mean to you and how hard you have worked to achieve them.  Do you still want your Will to be cheap?

Every family is different, every situation is different and what each person needs in their will is different – it is bespoke to you, your family and your personal situation. 

Your Will is an investment. The upfront expense saves cost and heartache later.  

Inheritance tax efficient save hundreds of thousands of pounds, care home fee efficient will save hundreds of thousands of pounds, trust wills protect your entire wealth.  

Cheap usually means it’s prepared by someone who isn’t legally qualified, is not regulated, cannot advise on tax, sells you things you do not need or that do not work and is not insured.  

So what are you paying for? 

Bespoke advice tailored to you which includes inheritance tax advice and advice on mitigating this.  Business property and agricultural property advice and advice on mitigating exposure.  Advice and assistance on income tax, capital gains tax, ensuring property is owned in the correct way so it goes exactly where you want when you are not here.  Making sure your business goes exactly where you want when you are not here.  Protecting you estate from attack from third parties.  You are dealing with experienced qualified insured lawyers who understand you and your family inside out.  

To book an appointment, contact the team via wtp@mlplaw.co.uk or for further information visit https://www.mlplaw.co.uk/wills/

 

Challenges in Probate: Defending a contested Will

The legal process of administering an estate after someone passes away, can often become a complex and emotionally charged undertaking, particularly when faced with contested wills. The challenges that arise during these disputes can test the boundaries of family relationships and legal frameworks. In this article, we explore some of the common challenges encountered in probate and offer insights into effectively defending contested wills.

  1. Undue Influence and lack of capacity: A frequent challenge in defending contested wills is the allegation of undue influence or the claim that the deceased lacked the mental capacity to make rational decisions. Family members or interested parties may argue that the deceased was coerced into altering their will, or that they were not of sound mind when the will was created. Establishing the mental capacity of the testator at the time of drafting the will becomes crucial in such cases.
  2. Ambiguous wording and interpretation: Ambiguities in the language of a will can lead to disputes among beneficiaries. Vague or unclear terms may give rise to differing interpretations, causing family members to contest the distribution of assets. Resolving these issues often requires a careful examination of the testator’s intentions, considering the context and potential external influences.
  3. Family dynamics and disputes: Inheritance disputes often expose underlying family tensions and rivalries. Sibling rivalries, blended family dynamics, or disputes arising from unequal distribution of assets can complicate the probate process. Mediation or legal intervention may be necessary to guide through these familial challenges and find equitable resolutions.
  4. Forgery and fraud claims: Individuals may allege that the will is fraudulent or that signatures were forged. Proving or disproving such claims involves forensic analysis and careful examination of the authenticity of documents. Adequate documentation and witnesses become pivotal in defending against accusations of forgery or fraud.
  5. Executor’s role and conduct: The actions of the executor play a crucial role in the probate process. Challenges may arise if beneficiaries perceive the executor as acting against the testator’s wishes or in a manner that lacks transparency. Clear communication, adherence to legal obligations, and ethical conduct are essential for executors to successfully defend the probate process.

Defending contested wills in probate requires a delicate balance of legal expertise, empathy, and understanding of complex family dynamics. As these challenges can lead to emotional strain and protracted legal battles, seeking professional advice early in the process is often key. By addressing the issues of undue influence, ambiguous wording, family disputes, potential fraud, and executor conduct, individuals involved in probate can work towards a fair and just resolution, preserving the intent of the deceased and minimizing conflict.

Seeking Legal Advice

Our team understands the sensitive nature of probate and emotional challenges that can arise during such times. We are committed to guiding you through each step of the process, providing clarity. Whether you are an executor trying to fulfil your responsibilities or a beneficiary seeking to defend your rights, out team can provide comprehensive support and guide you through the process, working towards a resolution.