Grounds for Contesting a Will

We understand that every situation is different, and that will disputes can happen for many reasons. It is therefore important to know on what grounds it is possible to contest a will.

Some of the main reasons for contesting a will are as follows:

  1. the person signing the will did not know or understand what they were signing
  2. the person signing the will was persuaded or pressured to sign it
  3. the person signing the will did not have proper mental capacity
  4. the will was not signed and witnessed properly
  5. the person making the will promised you something but it was not in the will

It is important to highlight that only a person having some interest in the will is able to contest it.

Other grounds for Contesting a Will

If you have suffered loss because a will was not written properly or you believe the estate of a deceased person has not been administered properly then you may have a claim. We can advise on all probate work and validity disputes. Burt Brill & Cardens are experts at writing wills, and experts at deciphering them.

Who Can Contest a Will

  • A beneficiary under the Will.
  • Someone who is owed money by the deceased.
  • Someone who was promised something by the deceased.

The Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependents) Act 1975 also sets out who can make a claim for provision to be made for them.  For example, if you were part of the family or were being looked after by the deceased, then you may be entitled to contest a will.

To make a claim under this Act, you must fit into one of the following categories:

  • A spouse of the person who has passed away.
  • A former spouse of the person who has passed away, ONLY if you have not remarried.
  • A partner who lived with the deceased for at least 2 years immediately before the death.
  • A child of the person who has passed away.
  • A person who was treated as a child of the family by the person who passed away.
  • Someone who was supported financially (partly or totally) by the person who has died.


Contesting a Will: your free guide

Contentious Probate is becoming an increasing issue in the UK. Dealing with issues around who is entitled to what in a Will requires a sensitive approach which looks at a wide range of factors, from family disputes to difficulties regarding mental capacity and undue influence.

Our Contesting a Will Guide covers our 5 key tips to solving issues around contentious probate, and is completely free of charge for you to download.

Get in touch

If you are concerned about a Will or probate, call our team today on 01273 604 123, or email us at