Why are inheritance disputes on the rise?
4 November 2016
Inheritance disputes were once considered the preserve of the wealthy or famous but in recent years the number of families contesting a relative’s will in the High Court has soared by 11 per cent, from 116 in 2015 from 104 the previous year according to The Times.
In addition, higher rates of divorce, remarriage and cohabitation, combined with an increase in the value of estates, and a greater awareness of rights, means that relatives are more likely to pursue any inheritance they consider to be due to them.
An inheritance dispute can take any number of forms, from concerns that a will has been incorrectly made or forged, to a dependant believing that they have been unfairly left out or not received what they were entitled to.
Disputes can also arise over the choice and conduct of executors and trustees who are responsible for overseeing the probate process, paying inheritance tax and distributing gifts according to the terms of the will.
Anyone with concerns about a will, or the probate process, should act quickly and take legal advice as soon as possible as there are strict time limits to make a claim.
We can help you with:
- challenging the validity of a will;
- disputes between executors and beneficiaries;
- removal of executors;
- claims arising from the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975; and
- disputes relating to the ownership of property.
The contents of this article are for the purposes of general awareness only. They do not purport to constitute legal or professional advice. The law may have changed since this article was published. Readers should not act on the basis of the information included and should take appropriate professional advice upon their own particular circumstances.