Trust and Will disputes are often stressful and upsetting, even more so if family relationships are involved and emotions run high.

Our specialist team are experts at resolving all kinds of contentious trust and probate issues and we pride ourselves in providing clear and transparent advice tailored to the specific needs of each individual client.  

Our experience and service

We have a significant breadth of experience and can assist with all issues connected with estates, wills, trusts and probate. We act for clients across East Anglia as well as throughout England and Wales and internationally. We are dedicated to providing a service that is personal to our clients. No two clients, or matters, are alike however we are able to draw on our extensive skills and knowledge to provide tailored and practical advice and solutions. 

We act for all parties, whether they are needing to pursue a potential issue, or defend one. We act for individuals, corporations and charities and recognise the needs and concerns of each are often very different. 

We offer advice on all contentious issues including:

  • Will disputes – validity claims
  • The Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependents) Act 1975
  • Disputes between executors/administrators/trustees and beneficiaries
  • Trust disputes 
  • The interpretation of a Will/trust document
  • Rectification
  • Variation of Wills and Trusts 
  • The rights of adopted and illegitimate children 
  • Problematic Estate administrations
  • Removal of executors, administrators or trustees
  • Recovering debts
  • Enduring or Lasting powers of attorney
  • Intestacy
  • Domicile 
  • Missing beneficiaries 
  • Deputies  

Our Contentious Trusts and Probate Team is supported by our award winning Private Client Advisory Team who advise on a whole range of non-contentious issues including probate and administration, tax and estate planning.

Our approach

We appreciate how daunting, confusing and overwhelming a dispute can be. You will be given a primary point of contract from the outset of your matter. We will guide you through your dispute every step of the way, adapting our advice to your specific needs, aims and concerns in a proportionate and practical way. We are prepared to go above and beyond for our clients and value feedback to ensure we are maintaining the first class service we take pride in. 

Fees

We understand that fees are often a concern. We can discuss a variety of funding options with you and will endeavour to provide accurate advice on costs as early as possible. We will keep you updated with regards to the fees that are being incurred, and your options to seek to reduce costs where possible. 

Resolution

A dispute doesn’t necessarily result in court. We have experience of a wide range of alternative dispute resolution, including negotiation, mediation, early neutral evaluation and expert determination. Where a dispute cannot be resolved though such means, we can take your matter right through the court system; whether that be in the court of protection, County Court, High Court or beyond to the appeal courts. We also work closely with a number of barristers chambers so we can provide you with recommendations on first class counsel with real expertise in the relevant practice area. 

Quality standard

All of our lawyers are either members of, or studying to be members, of ACTAPS (The Association of Contentious Trusts and Probate Specialists). This is a mark of quality and experience. Members are required to confirm annually that they remain dedicated to this practice area and use the body to assist with keeping up to date with the sometimes fast moving changes to this area of law. 

Information

We regularly produce articles covering current topics, news and general awareness of contentious probate and trust issues. Our Private Client Advisory and Charities teams also produce regular newsletters covering a number of topics and we often feature. You can download copies from our newsletter page. If you would like to automatically receive future issues please register your details.

  Legal 500 UK Top Tier 2020

Key contacts

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Marie McMahon

Senior Associate

+44 (0)1245 211291

+44(0)7972 639048

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Laurence Weeks

Partner – Head of Commercial Litigation and Dispute Resolution

+44 (0)1223 326585

+44 (0)7919 497114

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Meet the full team