Disputes and disagreements can arise for many reasons and often cause much distress and upset for the people involved. Taking legal advice at an early stage from expert solicitors can help avoid a drawn out legal battle by resolving any misunderstanding and frustration.
Our disputes and litigation are handled by Simon Heapy who is an experienced solicitor who has been named as a leading individual by the Legal 500 (2016) and Chambers & Partners (2016 and 2018). We offer a personalised serviced with clear costs and timescales.
We understand that disputes and disagreements can be emotionally draining (whatever the outcome) and looking after your mental health is equally as important as managing your legal case. We can therefore established links with specialist counsellors who can provide emotional support for you during the process should you feel the need for additional support.
Our Dispute Services
We can assist with all types of disputes and litigation relating to inheritance, estates and wills.
Challenging and Contesting a Will
If you believe that the Will doesn’t reflect the wishes of the person that has died or there is mistake in the Will, it is possible to contest the Will. It is also possible to challenge the Will on the basis that the person signing the Will wasn’t capable of understanding it (lack of capacity) or if they were coerced in making it (undue influence). We can assist in reviewing the Will and advise on how to challenge a Will.
Contentious Probate and Estate Disputes
Contentious probate is the name given to disputes and disagreements about what happens to a person’s estate after they die. It is never easy to lose a loved one and this can be made even harder by disagreements over how their estate is being managed. We can assist in resolving disputes when someone dies.
Court of Protection Disputes
Disputes involving the Court of Protection can arise, whether this is challenging the appointment of a deputy, contesting the need for a Court of Protection application or removing a deputy. Simon Heapy is one of England’s leading experts in challenging Court of Protection applications.
We can help defend attorneys, deputies, executors and beneficiaries facing claims. Whether this involves contesting the validity of a will, an Inheritance Act claim or facing being removed as executor or deputy.
Inheritance Act Claims
People in England can choose to leave their estate to whomever they wish. However, the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 offers protection for people that were financially dependent on the person that has died. Certain people, including spouses and children, are entitled to make a claim if they have not been named in a Will or inherit under the rules of Intestacy. There are strict time limits for making claims and it is important to take legal advice as soon as possible.
Instructing a professional such as a solicitor should ensure that your legal work is correct. Sadly it doesn’t always work out that way. If a solicitor or other professional has not complied with their professional obligations, has made a mistake or has been negligent, we can help correct the mistake or recover losses that you have incurred.
Disputes involving trusts can arise for a variety of reasons. We can help trustees facing challenges from beneficiaries or other parties. We can also help beneficiaries that believe the trust is being mismanaged.
What We Offer
We offer a pragmatic, plain speaking and sensitive approach to resolving disputes. We pride ourselves on offering a personalised service and Simon will guide you through the process from start to finish.
We can meet you at home, our office, your office or any other location to suit you. We also offer meetings by online video (such as Zoom, Skype and Teams) or by telephone.
Questions about disputes
If you have a question about challenging a will or estate and wish to have a no charge initial conversation with one of our solicitors, please contact Simon on 01625 709 737 or get in touch with us using the information on our contact us page.
Making an appointment
If you would like to make an appointment with one of our lawyers, please get in touch. We can meet you at home, at one of our meeting rooms or any other location to suit you. You can find further information about our meeting rooms on our contact us page.
We also offer meetings by online video (such as Zoom, Skype and Teams) or by telephone.
Our main office telephone number is 01270 868 373.
Further information about our approach to resolving disputes
We offer a personalised approach and we put you at the centre of everything we do. You will be allocated your own solicitor who will work with you throughout your process. They will also act for you whenever you instruct Spall Clark Solicitors.
We recognise that making a claim or defending a claim can be very stressful and emotionally draining. We will support you throughout the process and we can introduce you to counsellors who can provide you with additional emotional support during the process.
Step 1: Free initial consultation
We offer a free initial meeting so that you can explain your issue and concerns. We will discuss any potential claims, the merits of the claim and whether it is worth investigating further. We will also discuss the costs and timeframes.
Our initial meeting can be at your home, one of our offices, online video or by telephone.
Step 2: Confirming your instructions
We will provide you with a summary of your instructions (in plain English) and provide you with our engagement documents which confirm the cost and estimated timeframe for completion.
We can provide the documents to you by post or via our online portal, whichever you prefer. We use a secure online portal to ensure your personal information is kept safe.
Step 3: Investigations
We will undertake investigations into your matter which includes evidence gathering and establishing whether you have a claim or can successfully defend the claim.
Step 4: Review the results of our investigations with you
We will meet with you to review the results of our investigations. We will advise on the next steps, the costs and whether to proceed further.
How much does it cost?
We offer two different fee structures for litigation and disputes; an hourly rate (available in all cases) and a conditional fee agreement (available in a limited number of cases).
Our costs are based upon the time we spend dealing with your matter and our hourly rate is £250 per hour.
Our minimum fee is £500 which is equivilent to 2 hours work. As a guide, we expect our fees to range from £5,000 to £10,000 to complete an initial investigation into your matter.
Conditional Fee Agreement:
In some cases, we are able to offer a Conditional Fee Agreement (also referred to as No Win, No Fee). Instead of charging an hourly rate, we will take a share of the funds you recover should your claim be successful and our fees usually range from 20% to 30%. It also means there will no fee paid to us should you not be successful.
How long will it take?
It can be very difficult to estimate as we are often relying on third parties (such as other solicitors) to provide us with information. As an estimate, it should take around 8 weeks to complete the first stage of investigations.
What our clients say about our solicitors
‘You made it so easy for me’
‘Knowledge and feedback regarding our concerns on our matter was outstanding’
‘Approached in a sensitive manner’