Wills and Probate Claims
Making a will means that your loved ones are protected in the event of something happening to you in the future. Without one, there’s a risk of things becoming complicated for your family after you’re gone as they will not be able to properly carry out the probate process.
When drafting a will or dealing with probate, solicitors have a legal duty to deal with wills, trusts, and estates, in line with the wishes of their clients, and in a timely manner. Unfortunately, mistakes can occur, and if a solicitor has made a mistake that has impacted upon you or your loved ones, you may be able to make a claim for negligence. It could be a case of negligent will drafting or there may be the need to pursue a probate claim.
At Been Let Down, we will help you to seek the compensation you are entitled to after an incorrect will has been drafted or there has been an issue with probate. Our will and probate negligence solicitors will work with you to find out what happened and help you make a claim.
What is a will?
Before you embark on making a claim, it’s worth ensuring you fully understand what a will is. Having this knowledge puts you in a good position for being able to see where negligence may have taken place.
A will is the legal document that sets out your wishes for your estate, as well as how any children under the age of 18 are to be cared for upon your death. Without one, your wishes may not be known and followed.
Although it isn’t easy to think about what happens next, it can be the best way to care for your family and prevent them from having to face unnecessary financial problems during a difficult time. However, with so much at stake, it may be surprising to learn that 60% of UK adults do not have a will.
Having a will in place is important, getting it right even more so. Making sure everything is in place can benefit your family in the long run. But if an incorrect name is on the will or there has been some other instances of negligent will drafting, all is not lost. We’re skilled in handling issues such as this.
What is probate?
Probate is getting permission to carry out the requests and wishes that are set out in a person’s will. It also incorporates the full process of settling their estate, which usually means addressing outstanding debts and distributing any assets they had as instructed in their will.
If you are trying to settle a loved one’s estate, it is usually recommended that you hire a professional to do this as they are skilled in the processes and procedures involved. By choosing to appoint a professional who is experienced in probate, you can enjoy a level of reassurance during what can be a delicate and difficult time.
There are instances where things can go wrong, however, and this can exacerbate the situation you are in. In this case, you may need to call upon the services of probate negligence solicitors such as our team at Been Let Down.
How can a will or probate be mishandled?
Solicitors in the field of wills and probate may be asked to handle matters such as the distribution of estates or finding ways to reduce inheritance tax obligations. Additionally, they may be asked to put in place powers of attorney, so if a client becomes incapacitated, legal matters can be handled on their behalf by a person they nominated and trust. This may also involve distributing assets on behalf of the client on their death.
It is so important that wills are written correctly and professionally. It is also important that the probate process that follows is carried out properly. The will and the probate process, therefore, go hand-in-hand as the estate cannot be settled if there is an incorrect will affecting the process.
What are the different types of will and probate dispute?
There are a lot of reasons why you might need to call upon us for our expertise in handling disputes around wills and probate with solicitors. This can be a complex process, and if something goes wrong or is incorrect, seeking out expert advice and compensation can be the best course of action for you and your family. Here are some common reasons to pursue a will or probate claim.
If the will does not accurately reflect the wishes of the deceased, this can be due to the requests not being properly recorded. Miscommunication and insufficient will-drafting can lead to beneficiaries missing out and important instructions being missed that can have an impact on those left behind.
Another situation which can arise is where the deceased gave instructions for a will, but it was never signed before their death due to delay on the part of the solicitor, meaning their wishes are not followed.
A further example is where a property is jointly owned by the deceased and someone else under a joint tenancy. The deceased may make a will leaving their share of the property to a particular beneficiary, but unless they advise the deceased to sever the joint tenancy, this provision in their will has no effect.
Inheritance tax issues
Another common mistake is the miscalculation of inheritance tax, which can cause problems to beneficiaries and family members in the future. This is a complicated issue that requires expert insight to resolve, however it is a highly valid reason to pursue a claim.
As a beneficiary or intended beneficiary of a will, you may become involved in a dispute about the will, for example with other beneficiaries. If you are incorrectly or poorly advised by a solicitor when pursuing this claim and incur financial losses as a result, you may be able to make a claim against the solicitor who gave you that advice.
How to make a claim for will or probate negligence
If you have received legal advice regarding the will or probate of a loved one who has passed away that you feel was not handled correctly or professionally, you may be able to claim compensation due to will or probate negligence. Our solicitors can help. The first thing to do is to contact a claims specialist who is well versed in dealing with such cases, and who understands the intricacies involved.
Your will or probate negligence solicitor will assess the details of your case including any correspondence, the people involved, dates, events, and outcomes, and will then be able to advise you whether you can go forward with a claim for professional negligence. This would be a will or probate claim.
Negligence has to be proven
Our primary aim when compiling your case is to prove negligence occurred, and as a direct result, you suffered loss. In a will claim your loss would be the inheritance that you would have received but for the negligence. In a probate claim the financial losses would depend on the circumstances but could include extra tax paid, or legal costs incurred in a probate dispute which should not have been incurred, In some cases it may also be possible to recover damages for psychological damage.
As with all cases of professional negligence compensation, you should always seek expert help as soon as you are aware of the negligent act. This is because strict time limits apply and the more time your claims solicitor has to work on the case, the better your chances will be of receiving the best outcome. The usual time limit is 6 years. In a will case this will be from when your loved one passed away; in a probate case you will have 6 years from the negligence.
We understand that an incorrect will or probate negligence can have a huge impact on both your financial and emotional wellbeing, as an individual and as a family. We pride ourselves on offering a service that allows you to seek the compensation you may be entitled to.
Contact us today
Start the claims process today by speaking to one of our team. The sooner you get in touch with Been Let Down, the sooner we can work with you to rectify the damage done by negligent will drafting or probate negligence.
When you talk to our team, we will listen to you to understand what happened and advise you of the next steps. You can call us, make an online enquiry or request a call back at a time that works for you. Contact our legal team and we will help you and your family move forward.
Here to help you
Get in touch today and find out how we can help with your case for will or probate negligence compensation.