How Much Does It Cost To Contest A Will?

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As with any legal process, the expenses can quickly mount and unfortunately contesting a Will is no different. 

The cost of contesting a Will differs for each case and can depend on several factors. Many companies will act on your behalf with a no win no fee contract. Normally their fee ranges from between the 25%-30% margins but do always check the contract before agreeing to proceed. 

The most important thing to do when trying to decide if you should contest a Will is to speak to a solicitor as soon as possible.

The fees involved in contesting a Will

You may be wondering what fees are involved when deciding to go ahead with a Will contest. These include – 

  • Solicitors fees 
  • Disbursement fees – Medical records, Land Registry documents. 
  • Barrister fees. 
  • Court fees. 
  • Cost for experts. 

All parties involved are required to pay their own initial costs although the losing party is often required to pay for the costs for the winning party.

On occasions a Judge may order the fees to be paid out of the deceased estate, in such cases where the Testator has been the cause of the litigation or where it is seen as reasonable for there to be an investigation into the Will. 

The time it takes to contest a Will

Obviously the amount of time it takes to settle the case will affect the cost greatly. For example, if a conclusion is reached after the first Letter of Claim is sent then the cost will be greatly reduced.

However, when family tensions and emotions are involved, mediation can sometimes fail and the case proceeds all the way to a contested trial in court. In these cases the costs will mount significantly and can easily run into the tens of thousands. 

Why is it so expensive? 

Contesting a Will is a long and complex procedure that can often require expert input.

If you are disputing the validity of the Will based on medical grounds, a medical expert will be needed.

If you are claiming that the Will is forged, a handwriting expert will be called upon.

If you are disputing the true value of the estate then a surveyors report will be asked for.

It can take a team of many professionals to be able to prove your case and the expenses quickly rise.

Important things to remember when contesting a Will

The most important thing to do when trying to decide if you should contest a Will is to speak to a solicitor as soon as possible.

A Will must be contested within six months from the Grant of Probate. Your solicitor will be able to inform you on whether they believe you have a substantial claim and you will be able to ask any questions you have regarding the financial side of the proceedings. 

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