Contested Wills & Estate Disputes

Disputes often arise around the distribution of an estate following a death.  Spouses, children or dependants of the deceased may believe that they were not properly provided for under the will, or that the will does not reflect the deceased’s intention.  Further disputes may arise over the conduct of the executor.

Whether you are an executor trying to meet your obligations, someone who believes they were not properly provided for under the terms of a will, or are a person concerned about the will being followed, we have the experience and knowledge to help. Email us today.

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Contesting A Will
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Defending A Will
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Dying Without A Will (Intestacy)
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Other Wills & Probate Disputes
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FREE Case Assessment

We offer a free initial case assessment.

We will obtain preliminary instructions from you and advise you whether we believe we are able to assist you in your matter.  If we believe we may be able to assist you we will discuss with you the the process, the terms on which we can act (including the likely costs) and the value of the claim.  The case assessment may be by phone, or in person. There is no cost associated with this case assessment, nor any obligation to instruct us in your matter.

You can contact Tanya Segelov, or David Taylor directly, or contact our office by phone, email or the web-chat to arrange your free case assessment.

Contact us using the website

David or Tanya are generally available for online chat to answer specific questions – please follow this link.

Contact us by phone

Please feel free to call us to speak to a lawyer.  We have a national toll free number, or local numbers for our Melbourne and Sydney offices.

1800 430 855
02 8880 0500
03 9021 7260
Contact us by email

You can email us at mail@segelovtaylor.com.au, or fill out the form below.  We will get back to you within 24 hours.

Testimonials

Estate Disputes Articles

No win, no fee policy

Segelov Taylor are committed to provide high quality legal services on accessible and reasonable terms.  Legal costs should not be the impediment to people enforcing their legal rights.

Because we are a specialist, boutique firm with less overheads than some of the larger, generalist firms, we provide very high quality legal services at a lower price.

Prior to commencing the claim we will provide a costs disclosure which clearly sets out the fee arrangements.  In proceedings where we act for a claimant in contesting a will, we generally act on a no win, no fee basis.

For more detailed general information about our fees in wills and estate matters, please see our fee policy page, or call us.

Common Questions

Segelov Taylor are committed to provide high quality legal services on accessible and reasonable terms.  Legal costs should not be the impediment to people enforcing their legal rights.

Because we are a specialist, boutique firm with less overheads than some of the larger, generalist firms, we provide very high quality legal services at a lower price.

Prior to commencing the claim we will provide a costs disclosure which clearly sets out the fee arrangements.  In proceedings where we act for a claimant in contesting a will, we generally act on a no win, no fee basis.

For more detailed general information about our fees in wills and estate matters, please see our fee policy page, or call us.

Our fees in wills and estate matters

Segelov Taylor acts on a ‘no win no fee’ basis for individuals in family provision claims. This means if you are not successful you will not be charged for our costs incurred in litigating the claim. However, if you are not successful in your claim you may be order to pay the executor’s costs. It is therefore important you seek legal advice as to the merits of any claim before commencing proceedings.

If you are the executor of a Will where a family provision claim has been made you are entitled to have the cost of defending the claim paid by the estate. Read more…

What is the difference between challenging and contesting a will?

Contesting a will and challenging a will have very different meanings.

A will is contested when someone believes that they have not received adequate provisions or fair treatment from the deceased’s estate. This does not mean they believe the will was not valid. The process is often referred to as a family provisions claim. 

A will is challenged where there is a dispute as to the validity of the entire will itself. To challenge a will is to claim that the will is an unjust representation of the deceased’s interests or has been created in an illegitimate way. A challenge is an appeal for the entire will to be struck out. When this occurs, a prior valid will have effect, or there may be no valid will and the rules of intestacy will apply. 

What time limits apply in wills matters?

A family provision claim must be filed within 12 months of the date of death. The court has a discretion to extend the time for the commencement of a claim if there is good reason for the delay.

Can I contest a will if I received something under it?

The fact that you received something under a will does not prevent you from bringing a claim contesting a will.

Rather, the crucial issues are whether you (a) are an eligible person (generally a spouse, child, or dependent), and (b) whether you received adequate provision under the will, taking into account all the relevant considerations.

How long do claims take to complete?

A claim is made by filing an application in Court along with a detailed Affidavit setting out the circumstances of the case. This must be done within 12 months of the date of death.  The estate will respond and file its own evidence.

The matter will then be listed for compulsory mediation. This is generally within 4-6 months of the claim being filed.  Most matters settle at mediation.

If a matter doesn’t settle at mediation, it will proceed to hearing. This will normally occurs within  12 and 18 months of the commencement of proceedings.

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