Contesting a Will

Expert advice on challenging a Will or making a claim against an estate.

“Claire advised that we would win despite being ten months over the time limit, and her judgment was absolutely correct. Her experience and expertise encouraged us to keep moving forward in a difficult case and won an outstanding life-changing victory for two minors.”

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Grounds for contesting a Will

A person’s Will should accurately reflect their wishes at the time of their death and it’s important that this is respected. This is heavily protected in English law. When a family member or loved one dies, even if the contents of their Will is a shock to you and not what you expected, this alone is not grounds for contesting the validity of the Will.

However, if you believe that their intentions or true wishes were not reflected in their Will then in some circumstances, you may be able to challenge it. Perhaps they lacked mental capacity when the Will was written or undue influence was placed on them when they were making the Will. It may even be that the Will is fraudulent or that the signature has been forged.

If you believe that you have grounds to contest a Will, then talk to our specialist inheritance disputes team. Contesting a Will can be a stressful and challenging process, where emotions run high and you may be worried about how this could affect family relationships. We will always listen to your concerns and can help you decide on the best way forward based on your desired outcome and family dynamics. 

Read more about contesting a will on our FAQs page.

If you’ve been excluded from a Will

If you have been excluded from a Will or believe the inheritance you have received is insufficient, you may be able to make a claim under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependents) Act 1975. This allows you to make a claim against the deceased’s estate for ‘reasonable provision’.

What is considered reasonable provision will depend on the circumstances, but the general principle is that an Inheritance Act claim allows dependents of the deceased to cover the cost of financial assistance and other types of support they would normally have received from the deceased.

You can make an Inheritance Act claim when there is a valid Will or where the deceased left no Will.

When there is no Will

When someone dies without a Will then their estate will be distributed in line with the rules of intestacy. This is based on an established hierarchy of close relatives and married or civil partners outlining who would inherit what from the estate.

In some circumstances, you may be able to make a claim against the estate if you were financially dependent on the person at the time of their death, most often if you lived with them as an unmarried partner. We can advise if a successful claim is likely based on your particular circumstances. It is important to act quickly as there are strict time limits as well as additional challenges if some of the estate has already been distributed.

Your Will disputes specialists

Whether you want to challenge the validity of a Will or make a claim against an estate our expert Will dispute solicitors can help. We have extensive specialist experience dealing with a range of Will disputes and a very strong track record of securing the outcomes desired by our clients.

Our Specialists

Our Contesting a Will specialists

Rachel Harwood, Legal Assistant, Disputes Team at Hedges Law

Rachel Harwood

Legal Assistant

Ella Swanwick, Trainee Solicitor, Disputes Team at Hedges Law

Ella Swanwick


Contesting a Will advice pricing

We understand the importance of having clear information and transparency about the cost of your legal advice.

Details of our pricing will always be provided from the outset and once our team has an understanding of your legal needs, you will receive a detailed summary of the expected cost, as well as any payment options available. Please contact us to find out more.

Get in touch

For any questions regarding contesting a will legal services
please call 01865 594265 or email us at,
for a friendly, no obligation discussion.