Wills Litigation on the Increase


An article published in the Law Society Gazette this week has highlighted a substantial increase in the number of claims lodged at Court involving alleged breach of duties by Executors. The article suggests that this could be attributed to “the increased use of acquaintances or family members as DIY executors and trustees, rather than instructing solicitors”.

At Harris & Harris we have many years of experience in acting for and advising Executors. We are able to ensure that the administration of a deceased person’s estate is conducted properly and in accordance with the law. In appropriate cases we offer our clients the option of appointing the partners in the firm as professional Executors. Appointing an independent professional to act as Executor can lift the burden of estate administration from family and provide peace of mind that your estate will be in safe hands.

As Solicitors, we are regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) and legally obliged to maintain a high level of Professional Indemnity Insurance. This means that, should anything go wrong in a case where we have acted as Executors, the beneficiaries of the estate are protected. However in cases where a non-solicitor Executor has failed to deal with things properly, or perhaps even stolen from the estate, the beneficiaries may have no such protection and could lose their inheritance.

We were also one of the first 100 firms in the country to join the Law Society’s new voluntary Wills & Inheritance Quality Scheme (WIQS). In achieving accreditation, the firm underwent a rigorous application and assessment process to demonstrate our adoption of best practice procedures in delivering wills and probate advice.

Should any of our clients have concerns over the way in which an Executor is dealing with an estate where they are a beneficiary, or perhaps where they feel they ought to be, we also have specialist solicitors in our Litigation team who can advise upon the rights of such individuals, and upon the role and duties of the Executor. When things have gone wrong, we can advise you on the available options and help you to achieve a fair result.

The full Law Gazette article can be accessed via the following link:-

Law Gazette Article

If you would like to speak to one of our specialist lawyers, please click to visit:-

Wills, Probate and Trusts

Dispute Resolution / Litigation