Contesting a Will and Claims against Deceased Estates

Legal disputes and litigation involving a Will of a deceased person or their estate, such as contesting a Will, are common. As an executor or administrator of a deceased estate, you become the Legal Personal Representative of the deceased’s estate and will therefore be the party named as the defendant in any litigation against the estate or where a party seeks to contest the Will.

Litigation against deceased estates can involve:

  • challenging the validity of a will
  • contesting a Will via a testator family maintenance claim
  • claims against executors or trustees who may have breached their legal obligations

Challenging the validity of a Will

There are certain legal requirements for a Will to be valid. Generally speaking, the person making the Will must have testamentary capacity meaning that they understand they are making a Will and understand the effect of the terms of the Will they are signing. A challenge to the validity of a Will involves making an application to the Supreme Court of Victoria and can be complex, especially when involving the need to present medical evidence.

Mackinnon Jacobs Lawyers has experienced lawyers who can provide advice to you if you suspect that a Will may be invalid.

For further information, see our FAQs in relation to challenging the validity of a Will

Contesting a Will

A person who believes they have been wrongly or unfairly left out of an otherwise valid Will can apply to the Court to contest the terms of that Will and seek that provision from the deceased’s estate be awarded to them in certain circumstances.

If you believe that you have been unfairly excluded from a Will it is crucial that you seek advise as soon as possible as time limits apply to these types of claims.

Mackinnon Jacobs Lawyers have substantial experience in prosecuting claims for provision under a Will or from a deceased’s estate, as well as assisting executors or administrators to defend these types of claims.

For further information,  see our FAQs regarding contesting a Will