Will Dispute Lawyers

Do I Need a Will Dispute lawyer?

Our Will Dispute Lawyers in Brisbane can assist estate administrators and those who suffer hardship because they have been overlooked or inadequately provided for in a will.

Administrators, financial dependents, beneficiaries and relatives need to know what might be involved if a dispute arises for example by reason of potential beneficiaries left out of a relative’s will.

A person is able to create their will however they please but that doesn’t mean others can’t exercise their right to dispute it. Queensland law allows family members or dependants who suffer hardship because they have been overlooked or inadequately provided for in a will, to bring a lawsuit for estate allocation to them. There are other grounds to dispute Wills as well.

An applicant should be an eligible person in relation to the estate of the deceased to dispute a Will. An eligible person is someone who falls under either one of the following:

  • Spouse of the deceased;
  • Child of the deceased;
  • A dependant of the deceased.

Will Dispute Lawyers

Who can claim against the estate in Queensland?

Most of your questions on Will Disputes and Inheritance related issues can be answered on this page and by using our free online Assessment Tool that can evaluate your position and tell you the strength of any potential claim.

Executors or administrators managing a deceased estate

An executor or administrator should give early consideration to whether any person who had a legitimate expectation to receive a benefit under a Will was omitted or "inadequately provided for". A court may, as the outcome of the dispute, vary the provisions or order the redistribution of the Estate. Disputes can arise if the person died without making a Will at all. A person who dies without a Will is said to have died “intestate”. A Will can also be contested by proving it to be invalid. An executor or administrator who has concerns about the validity of the will they are asked to administer should seek legal advice at an early stage.

Use our free online Assessment Tool to decide if there are family members or others who may contest the Will

A child, spouse, dependant or former spouse left out of a will

You can contest a valid Will if you receive inadequate provision. If the Court finds in your favour it can either vary the provisions or order the redistribution of the Estate. You may also contest your entitlement to receive a benefit if the person died without making a Will at all.

  • For further information see "Grounds for contesting a will";
  • Seek legal advice at an early stage because time limits apply;
  • You MUST make sure you know what you’re buying before signingany compromise or "release".

A person who dies without a Will is said to have died “intestate”. A Will can also be challenged by proving it to be invalid. To test the validity of the Will a court challenge is required.

Use our free online Assessment Tool if you believe you have unfairly been left out of a Will.

A beneficiary wishing to challenge the fairness of a will

Family members have an entitlement to challenge the provisions of a Will and the benefits provided to them or to any other person named as a beneficiary. Persons financially dependent on the deceased and relatives may also have the opportunity to make a challenge.

For a quick evaluation of the strength of your entitlement, use our Online Assessment tool or simply give us a call to book in a free appraisal or send us a message by using the form at the bottom of this page.

Strict short time limits apply.

Some of the questions that a court can consider in determining whether or not adequate provision has been made for a person in a deceased Estate are:-

  1. Whether any provision you have already received is adequate for your proper maintenance, education and advancement in life.
  2. Competing claims of other eligible persons or beneficiaries.
  3. The nature and duration of your relationship with the person who has passed away.
  4. Your financial resources and earning capacity.
  5. The size of the estate.

Use our free online Assessment Tool if you believe you have grounds to challenge a Will.

A child or spouse who wishes to administer the estate of a deceased who died with no will

If a person dies  without a Will, the court will receive applications from a spouse, adult child or even a person to whom the deceased owed money, to be appointed as Administrator of the deceased's estate. The type of grant issued by the court in such circumstances is called "Letters of Administration". It has the same effect of Probate of a will.

If there is no Will, the Administrator must distribute the estate according to the "Rules of Intestacy", which in the first instance provide for the estate to be divided between a surviving spouse and children in specified shares.

Use our free online Assessment Tool to decide if you are likely to need probate or letters of administration.

An executor or beneficiary who is concerned about the validity of a will

A Will can be proved invalid in many varying circumstances. if for example the deceased was not of sound mind, perhaps due to dementia, at the time the will was executed, then the deceased will be said to have lacked "legal capacity" and the will is therefore invalid. Any earlier will would take precedence in those circumstances.

A Will might also be invalid due to "undue influence" or forgery. Persons who witness a will cannot receive a benefit under the will.

Use our free online Assessment Tool to evaluate the strength of any claim that involves challenging the validity of a will.

A child, spouse or dependant who is suspicious of the influence of another person over the terms of the will

There are frequent court disputes concerning the conduct of professional advisors, carers and relatives who are alleged to have exerted "undue influence" on a deceased so as to obtain a large part or all of an Estate.

in these circumstances if you think the signature on the will is not that of the deceased; or that the deceased lacked "legal capacity" when making the will, you should seek early legal advice.

Use our free online Assessment Tool to evaluate the strength of any claim that involves challenging the validity of a will.

Will the matter be taken to court?

When it comes to estate disputes the matter will often settle before it reaches the court date, usually in Mediation Conference.

Where do I start?

In Queensland, written notice must be given within six (6) months and legal action commenced within nine (9) months of the date of death. To get started, collect relevant information as best you can include a list of estate assets, a list of surviving dependants and particulars of your relationship with the deceased.

Unsure if you have been left a benefit under a Will?

We can assist by obtaining a copy of a Will from an executor to determine if you are receiving a benefit from an estate. We won’t charge fees to seek the Will if it shows you are not a beneficiary and you do not wish to proceed with any claim against the estate. If you are a beneficiary or wish to claim against the estate, our fees will only be payable once you receive a benefit from the estate.

If you believe you are entitled to obtain a copy of a Will and you may be a beneficiary, please contact our office or click here to make an online request.

Start the Process

Contact our Wills and Estate lawyers by sending us an email and we’ll get in touch shortly, or phone between 8:30AM and 5:00PM Monday to Friday — we would be delighted to speak.

Office hours — 1300 580 413

Monday8:30 am - 6:00 pm
Tuesday7:30 am - 6:00 pm
Wednesday7:30 am - 6:00 pm
Thursday7:30 am - 6:00 pm
Friday7:30 am - 5:00 pm
SaturdayClosed
SundayClosed

Do you have any questions?