Can there be a dispute over your Will when you die?

You are entitled in your lifetime to divide your property up any way you wish. This should be done with certainty and without the worry that it may not be followed in the future. Recent Government statistics showed that the number of Wills that are being contested each year is rising. It is still a very small percentage in comparison with the number of Wills that are written.

The question we often get asked when taking instructions to draft a Will is – can it be challenged? The short answer to that is yes. We know that is not what the client wants to hear but nothing can stop someone from contesting a Will. However, the real question should be “Can my Will be successfully challenged?’. The short answer to that is that is depends on how well it has been drafted. At Nayyars Solicitors we take great care in taking detailed instructions and our aim to always to make a client’s Will watertight and stand up in Court to any challenge.

Wills are challenged if they contain anything controversial, so for example, if one of the children is missed out or nothing is left to a spouse. A Will is normally contested by the person who expected to receive part of the estate as a beneficiary. They can challenge the Will on a number of different grounds including the person making it was under undue influence or was not of sound mind.

There are several legal methods in making it clear that the contents of the Will were the wishes of the person making them. As stated above, we will complete a detailed questionnaire with the Will and keep extensive notes. These are stored with the clients file and may be produced as evidence of the client’s wishes. We normally advise clients to tell their loved ones (if they want to) what they have done and why. They could write a letter to their Executors which sets out the reasons why they have excluded a particular person from the Will. This letter can be stored with the Will. The reason could also be mentioned in the Will itself.

A good solicitor should be able to draft a Will according to the clients wishes without the worry that the Will could be successfully challenged. At Nayyars Solicitors we handle all matters of Wills and Probate with sensitivity and confidence.

If you would like to make a Will call our Team today.

Ayesha Nayyar

Principal Solicitor

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