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Contentious probate refers to a situation where there is a dispute over the validity of a Will or inheritance. We are able to offer a full range of services to assist both Executors and Beneficiaries in resolving probate disputes.

Disputes over Inheritance – If you were financially dependent on the deceased and they have not catered for you in their Will or if you have not benefited under the rules of intestacy it may be possible for you to bring a claim against their estate.

If you were financially dependent on the deceased you are able to bring a claim under the Provision for Family and Dependants Act 1975 (‘the Inheritance Act’). Similarly if the deceased had promised you assets from their estate and you relied on this to your detriment, Baches can assist you.

We appreciate that the thought of entering into legal action against an estate can be upsetting and that many people are deterred by the financial implications of involving Solicitors. We at Baches will consider your matter in great detail and act to resolve your dispute as amicably and quickly as possible in order to limit the costs and disruption caused to you and your family life.

Will Disputes- A Will can be disputed if the correct procedure has not been followed. This is usually if the deceased did not have capacity to make a Will or may have been forced into signing one.

In order for a Will to be valid there are certain legal requirements which must be followed for example, the person making the Will must understand the nature of the act and the effect, they must have had mental capacity to make the Will, they must have knowledge of the Will and approve it, and they must not be coerced into making the Will. If you feel these condition have not been met it is very important to act quickly with such matters as proceedings must be issued within 6 months of the Grant of Probate/Letters of Administration. It is therefore extremely important to obtain legal advice as soon as possible.

We at Baches can assist you in setting the Will aside. We work with many experts who can confirm the handwriting of the deceased on the Will and are also able to obtain medical information and details of the Will and how it was made in order to strengthen your case.

Similarly our society has become very litigious and due to the growing complexities of family life, the deceased may have understood perfectly well what they were signing and consciously decided to exclude certain relations from the Will. This does not prevent the relatives from bringing a claim against the estate and delaying the administration. If you are an Executor and find yourself in this situation, Baches can assist you with the removal of the Caveat and the expeditious resolution to the estate.

We are also able to assist with the following:

Executor Disputes – If you feel an Executor is not acting in the best interests of the estate and the beneficiaries or if working together with a Co-Executor has become problematic there are several options available to you.

An Executor has a legal duty to ensure the wishes in the Will are followed. In order to execute their duty the Executor has full access to a deceased’s funds once they obtain the Grant of Probate. If you are concerned over the actions of an Executor or believe you may not receive your full entitlement under the estate we can assist you.

Many beneficiaries are also concerned over the lack of information they are provided with. We have successfully assisted beneficiaries in obtaining detailed estate accounts and final bank statements and any other documents you may require in order to ensure they are receiving their full inheritance.

Baches are able to offer practical advice tailored to the size of the estate and your concerns, please contact us for further assistance.

Deputyship and Powers of Attorney- Abuse and Disputes – A Power of Attorney or Deputyship is usually in place when someone is no longer able to manage their financial affairs due to lack of mental capacity. Looking after someone’s affairs can be a huge responsibility and can cause family conflict. We are able to assist you if you have been reported to the Office of the Public Guardian or if you feel a vulnerable persons affairs are being mismanaged.

There is a strict legal requirement that the person appointed acts in the vulnerable persons best interests. As the person is no longer able to ‘keep an eye’ on their finances themselves some Attorney’s and Deputies can take advantage and use funds for their own benefit.

If you feel an Attorney or Deputy is abusing their position Baches can assist you with cancelling the Powers of the individual and protecting/recovering the assets.

Baches Solicitors can take a very robust approach when required and will always provide you with practical and professional support and advice. Our expert team can assist you in reaching the best outcome.

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