contesting a will in the UK

Contesting a will in the UK

If you believe you have been left out of the will of a person who died domiciled in England and Wales or if you feel that your gift in the will does not adequately provide the financial support you need, you may be able to contest the deceased’s will. You are able to do this in the UK by making a claim under The Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 (‘the Inheritance Act’).

Similarly, if the deceased did not make a will and this has meant that you are struggling financially, you may also be able to make an Inheritance Act claim.

Who Can Make A Claim against a will in the UK?

People who can make a claim under the Inheritance Act include: 

  • Spouse/civil partner of the deceased
  • Children of the deceased
  • A partner of the deceased who lived with them for two or more years immediately before the death
  • The ex-spouse/civil partner of the deceased who has not remarried /formed a new civil partnership
  • A person who the deceased treated as a child, e.g a stepchild
  • A person being financially maintained by the deceased

However there is no automatic right in England and Wales for any of the above to make a claim on an estate. The UK courts would consider the financial needs of the other beneficiaries as well as the nature of your relationship with the deceased. 

If you believe that you have not received the assets that you are due from the estate of someone who died domiciled in the UK, we can assist.

How do I protect my inheritance against someone contesting a will?

If you are a beneficiary of a will that is being contested by another party it is critical to get legal advice from a lawyers specialising in contested estates (also know an contentious probate) to protect your inheritance and advise of your rights.

Worldwide Lawyers can put you in touch with a specialist lawyer who can advise you of the merits of the case against the estate and advise you of the best way to deal with it to protect your interests.

Is there a deadline for contesting a UK will?

If you wish to contest a will in the UK it is crucial to act fast. Claims under the Inheritance Act usually need to be made within 6 months of probate being obtained in relation to the estate. There are, however, exceptions to this rule, so contact us to find out if you are able to take action.

Can I contest a will on a no-win no fee basis?

If you wish to contest a will in the UK, it can be possible to pursue the matter without having to pay any upfront fees. We can therefore help you if you have a legitimate claim to pursue even if you do not have the available funds at the outset.  

We also offer advice on the associated costs of the claim, as bringing an Inheritance Act claim to court can be an expensive process.

If you need advice regarding a claim in relation the will and estate of a deceased person who was domiciled in the UK, contact Worldwide Lawyers for a free, no-obligation discussion to see how we can help on 01244 470 339 (if calling from the UK) or on 0044 1244 470 339 (if calling from outside of the UK) or email