Lawrence Stephens

Claims Under Inheritance

Wills can lead to claims for compensation.

Someone who believes that they have been overlooked in the Will or not received the reasonable financial provision that they anticipated, may bring a claim under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975, commonly known as the Inheritance Act,

Individuals may bring such a claim if they were financially dependent on the deceased and have been left insufficient money, either under the terms of a Will or because no Will was made.

We advise clients on their eligibility to make a claim and represent them in bringing legal action for a share of the deceased’s estate.  Our team understands the difficulties and provides the necessary support and guidance.  We also represent executors in protecting estates from claims.

Who can make a claim?
  • A spouse or civil partner of the deceased
  • A former spouse or civil partner of the deceased who has not remarried
  • Children of the deceased
  • Anyone who was treated as a child of the family by the deceased
  • An individual who had been living with the deceased for two years or more before they died
  • Anyone being financially supported by the deceased before their death
How much is awarded?

If a claim succeeds, reasonable financial provision is awarded for maintenance.  A spouse or civil partner may be awarded a larger sum, potentially similar to a divorce award.

The Court will take into account the claimant’s needs and resources alongside those of other beneficiaries, as well as the size of the estate, the deceased’s obligations to the claimant, and the length of their relationship.

Time limit for starting a claim

A claim should be made within six months of the date on which a Grant of Probate or Grant of Letters of Administration is issued.  Anyone who believes they are entitled to bring a claim should therefore seek legal advice without delay.