In the Daily Mail recently, we see siblings falling out over contents of a Will.

An ambulance driver aged 63 produced a new Will after the death of his mother which leaves her £400,000 home to him and excludes his two siblings.

Often, a mysterious Will which no one knows about appears after death causing contention between family members.  There are many grounds on which a Will could be contested some of which include:

  • The Will is not validly executed
  • A fake Will
  • Insufficient mental capacity
  • Undue Influence
  • Not making provision for certain family members or financial dependants

In this case, the solicitors for the siblings will be looking for evidence to see if any of the above can apply.  This will include a copy of the deceased’s previous Will and wishes and potentially seeking evidence from the witnesses to the new Will.

To reduce the chances of a Will being contested, it helps to have a specialist solicitor prepare the Will in the first place. Professionals will ensure that the person making the Will is seen by themselves (undue influence) and check that the individual has the necessary mental capacity to make the Will and will also execute the new Will with you in accordance with the Wills Act 1837.  If family members are being excluded, they will explore the reasons and offer solutions as to how to reduce the chance of your Will being challenged.  All the details and instructions will be correctly documented in the event of the Will being challenged.

If you are interested in making or amending a will you can contact our specialist Wills, Trusts & Probate team. To challenge or contest a will we also have a specialist Contentious Probate team, who you can contact here.

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