Contesting a Will

More about contesting a Will


More about contesting a Will

A mistake may have been made in the drafting of a will meaning it does not properly express the wishes of the person who made it. If this mistake adversely affects you, it is possible to apply to the court for the will to be amended (known as rectification) within six months of the date of the grant of probate.

Research conducted by the Legal Services Board (LSB) shows that 20% of all wills contain mistakes that could invalidate them thanks partly to the use of DIY will kits available in supermarkets, chain stores and on the internet. While DIY will kits are probably adequate for a testator (the person making the will) with very simple affairs, they are deeply unsuitable for anyone with complicated finances, an extended family circle or a larger estate.

The Administration of Justice Act 1982 allows a will to be rectified if a court is satisfied that it does not express or carry out the testator's true intentions. There are however only three possible grounds for the court using this power to rectify a will:

  1. There must be clear evidence that the will does not reflect the intentions of the person who made the will (the testator)
  2. There was a typographical or clerical error (e.g. inadvertently mistyping a legacy clearly intended to be £1,000 as £100)
  3. There was a failure to understand the testator's clear instructions by whoever drew up the will

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