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Inheritance & Will Disputes.

The way you go about validly executing a will is dictated by statute section 9 of the Wills Act 1837 as amended by the Administration of Justice Act 1982.

The provisions are that:

  1. The will has to be in writing.
  2. It either has to be signed by the person making the will (testator), or by some person in the testator’s presence who directs him or her to sign of the testator’s behalf.
  3. That it is clear from the Testator’s signature he intended to give effect to the will
  4. The signature is made or acknowledged by the Testator in front of two witnesses.
  5. Those two witnesses then confirm they have witnessed the will by both signing the will before the Testator having witnessed him signing the will.

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Any of the above will be expensive to prove in a court of law, and most claims trying to disprove the validity of a will are a mixture from the above.

Added to any such claim, many throw in a claim under the terms of the Provision for Family and Dependants Act 1975.

In England and Wales the start position in law is that a person should be allowed to leave their entire estate, providing they have testamentary capacity to do so, to anyone or any organisation they want to, irrespective of their families’ needs and or those dependant upon them.

Parliament considered this state of affairs needed to be addressed, without still obliging a person to set aside a part of his or her estate in favour of family and dependants.

Contact us now to find out if you can make a claim and challenge a will.

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Or call on 0115 963 0179 - Without Obligation.

There may be no better way of describing Parliament’s reasoning but by quoting their introduction to this Act:

An Act to make fresh provision for empowering the court to make orders for the making out of the estate of a deceased person of provision for the spouse, former spouse, child, child of the family or dependant of that person; and for matters connected therewith

A claim can be made upon this Act even if a person dies without making a will (“intestate”).