1. Home
  2. |
  3. Information Hub
  4. |
  5. Legal Guides
  6. |
  7. Estate Administration: dealing with disputes

Estate Administration: dealing with disputes

After a death, disputes often arise over the handling of wills and trusts. Lodders answer some FAQs.

Lodders Solicitors graphic

After a death, disputes and confusion often arise within beneficiary parties over the handling and breakdown of wills and trusts.

We answer some FAQs to help – our answers should not be considered as formal legal advice as the background of any situation may affect the advice that we give.

I have recently lost a loved one and I think they may have had a will. However, I cannot locate the original. What can I do?

If your loved one had a solicitor, you should contact them first. They may have a copy of their will.

If this is not an option or if your enquiries prove unsuccessful, you can contact the National Wills Register to see if a will have been lodged with them. Alternatively, you could contact your local Law Society to see if they will send an email to all the law firms in the area enquiring about whether they hold a will.

My loved one made a will and I know where it is. However, the person holding the original is refusing to release it. Is there anything I can do?

Yes. you can apply to court for an order requiring the person to file the original will with the court. We can help you with this.

I believe I am a beneficiary. The named executors under a will are not applying for a grant of probate, despite my requests. What can I do?

You can apply to court for an order compelling the executors to apply for the grant.

Alternatively, you could ask the court to grant an order removing or substituting the executors. However, you should be aware that the court will only grant such an application in the most serious cases.

I am a beneficiary under a will and the executors are not keeping me informed, what can I do?

If you have tried to contact them and this has not worked, you can apply to court for an order requiring the executors to produce an inventory and account. We can help you do this.

I am a beneficiary under a will and I don’t think an executor is doing their job properly, what can I do?

In the most serious cases, you may be able to seek an order requiring the executor to be removed or substituted.

I am an executor under a will and I am being pressured to provide a copy of the will, estate accounts and other documents. Do I need to comply with the request?

No. There is no obligation on you to provide any testamentary documents to anyone. However, it is customary to provide such documents to named beneficiaries under the will.

There is a clause in a will that is not very clear. What should be done?

If everyone can agree on what the clause should mean, then the will can be rectified to reflect that change.

However, if an agreement cannot be reached, then the meaning of the clause would be for a Judge to determine. We can review this for you, provide our view and put a claim together if need be.

More information

If you require advice in relation to your specific case, our experts can assist you. Please contact us using the form below.

Contact us

Anjali is an associate solicitor and contentious probate specialist in Lodders’ Dispute Resolution team.

Anjali Narshi, Lodders Solicitors, Contentious Probate specialist, Stratford upon Avon
Senior Associate

Anjali Narshi