Contesting a Will During the Covid-19 Crisis

Being left out of a deceased person’s will is always a difficult and sensitive issue. The same also applies to circumstances where you or any other beneficiaries feel they have not been allocated as much as they are entitled to.

Contesting a will can be complex and challenging at the best of times, though is in its own right a time-sensitive process. With the Covid-19 pandemic having tragically claimed the lives of thousands of people across the UK well before their time, issues involving probate and contested wills are on the rise.

If you believe you have just cause to contest a will and would like to discuss the process or logistics of filing an official dispute while the country remains on lockdown, contact a member of the team at Aristone Solicitors today.

Typical Grounds for Contesting a Will

From a legal perspective, absolutely anyone wishing to do so can contest any will at any time and for any reason. However, in order for your complaint to be taken seriously, it is important to formally lodge your dispute at the earliest possible stage and ensure you have reasonable grounds for questioning the will.

Though all issues involving contentious probate are unique, the most common reasons for contesting a will include the following:

Testamentary Capacity

According to UK law, only competent adults aged 18 years or over with the mental capacity to do so are permitted to prepare a final will and testament.  Where a deceased individual may have created a will without appropriate testamentary capacity, there may be grounds for a dispute. Issues that can affect testamentary capacity include conditions such as dementia, senility or being under the influence of medication.

Fraud, Forgery, and Undue Influence

This applies where there is any evidence whatsoever to suggest that the will was procured (in full or in part) by way of fraud or forgery. If a single element of the will has been manipulated without the direct, formal and recorded consent of the deceased individual, it may be declared invalid.

Presence of a Secondary Will

Complications often arise when an individual prepares more than one will, though in the vast majority of instances it is the most recent will that is declared valid. This is why it is essential to ensure that any final will and testament produced is clearly and formally dated at the time it is written.

Sufficient and Appropriate Witnesses

It is not enough to simply pen a basic outline of your wishes and leave it in a safe place. For a will to be considered legally valid, it should be signed and dated in the presence of at least two adult witnesses, who both have adequate testamentary capacity at the time.

Absence of Information or Ambiguity

Another common reason for contesting a will is the presence of ambiguous information that is open to interpretation, or any absence of information considered important by those known to the deceased individual. It could simply be that they failed to be specific enough when detailing the allocation of their assets – the responsibility subsequently being passed to their executor.

Call Aristone Solicitors

If you would like to learn more about contentious probate or have any questions or concerns on the subject of contesting a will during the Covid-19 crisis, we’re standing by to take your call.

Contact a member of the team at Aristone Solicitors anytime for an obligation-free consultation.

Stay Up To Date With Our Latest News

Got a question?

We are glad that you preferred to contact us. Please fill our short form and one of our friendly team members will contact you back.

    Request a call


    Covid-19 business update: We are still open for business

    We’d like to take this opportunity to reassure you and our loyal clients that Aristone are operating as usual following Government guidelines.

    We have made changes to ensure that we can continue to provide you with the high quality services you expect from us. Our staff have been briefed and we have put the appropriate measures in place to assist with mitigating any risks. Our contingency plans are robust and have been proved to be effective over the last few weeks, and we continue to deliver our services to you.

    Learn more about our exclusive services we offer to businesses impacted by Covid-19:

    Terms and Conditions*:

    • In order to be eligible for the offers, you must instruct us using
      the same email address used during the sign- up for the newsletters.
    • The email address must remain the same and used to liaise until the matter closure.
    • You will be eligible for a 10% discount on your total conveyancing costs, once you sign our client care letter.
    • You will be eligible for a Free Will only when your conveyancing matter file is closed and the bills for the same are cleared.
    • Though Aristone carry out regular checks to confirm your eligibility, this may not always be practicable or possible and consequently we urge all clients to claim their free Will and 10% discount off Conveyancing fees by emailing the appropriate case handler with a print screen of the news letter subscription.
    • Subscribe to our newsletter for a FREE WILL, and get 10% off Residential conveyancing fees*,