Of the individuals who leave a Will when they pass away, only a small proportion of these individuals will have left a Will which their loved ones question. Will disputes can be very upsetting, which is why it is so important that a Will is properly drafted in the first instance to avoid your loved ones being put in a situation where they feel they have to contest a Will.Common Reasons For Contesting A Will
If you are considering contesting a Will, there are two ways in which people often successfully contest a Will. These are either contesting the validity of the Will or claiming that you have not been provided for under the Will. In some situations a Will is clearly invalid in the eyes of the law – Wills which have been improperly drafted or have not been signed will automatically be disregarded.
There are some situations in which the validity of a Will needs to be investigated. A Will must be drafted when the individual drafting the Will has full mental capacity to understand their decisions. They must also never be coerced into making a Will which contains requests which they are unhappy with. If a Will has been drafted under duress the Will is invalid.
Fraudulently drafted Wills are also becoming more common in the UK. This is another reason that a Will may be contested. If the Will of your loved one contains requests which seem very out of character, you may wish to contest the Will.
Who Can Contest A Will?
When contesting a Will, anyone can contest a Will on the grounds that it is invalid, however only certain people can contest a Will on the grounds that they have not been provided for. This is because under the Inheritance Act of 1975 spouses, children, civil partners and partners who have cohabited for 2 or more years are protected if they have not been provided for properly in the Will. This does not mean that you will always when contesting a Will if you have not been provided for. In the UK people are free to bequest their estate to whomever they wish. If it is ruled that the reasons for excluding an individual from a Will are valid, you will not be able to benefit from the deceased’s estate. A judge will examine each case on its own merit, and will come to a decision based upon the evidence available.
Solicitors at Roskell Davies can help you with all of your will enquiries. To speak with one of our experts, call us on 0800 142 2901.
For our full list of Wills & Probate Services, visit http://www.roskelldavies.co.uk/wills-and-probate-solicitors-birmingham/