Inheritance, Trust and Probate Dispute Resolution

The members of our team have a wealth of experience advising on trust and probate disputes. The ambit of what we do includes:

  • Claims under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 claims;
  • Challenges to the validity of Wills including those relating to a lack of testamentary capacity and undue influence;
  • Disputes regarding the ownership of a deceased’s ashes and applications for the removal of personal representatives;
  • Applications for rectification of a Will and issues regarding construction of a Will’s terms;
  • Advising trustees and beneficiaries in relation to trust assets and trust administration such as seeking disclosure of information regarding a trust or an account of the trust’s finances;
  • Applications to vary the terms of a trust;
  • Proprietary estoppel and constructive trust claims;
  • Claims against solicitors and other professionals in connection with the negligent drafting of a Will or trust, or where incorrect tax advice has been given; and
  • Advising on a range of disputes involving persons lacking capacity including dealing with the Office of the Public Guardian in cases of suspected financial abuse and applications to the Court of Protection on issues such as the removal of an attorney or deputy.

Our dispute resolution experience means we can act for individuals or groups of beneficiaries, trustees and personal representatives – even if the disputes involve cross border issues.

Disputes are likely to be stressful so we aim for an early resolution – using alternative dispute resolution methods, such as mediation, wherever possible.

Andrew O’Keeffe is a well-known and rightly respected litigator. Caroline Miller is brilliant. Jemma Goddard and Oliver Embley are outstanding associates who are respected by peers and loved by clients.

— Legal 500, 2021

Caroline Miller is a litigator with deep private client knowledge. The team has a range of talent across the spectrum, including Jemma Goddard who is a future star.

— Legal 500, 2021

A very strong team, especially for larger estates work and for complex trusts and tax issues. Andrew O’Keeffe is plain talking and no nonsense; he knows what he is doing and is very good at getting deals. Caroline Miller is able and expert and very good with clients.

— Legal 500, 2021

Wedlake Bell is a growing presence in this area of law, which is definitely able to take on bigger, higher-profile teams and come out on top. Andrew O’Keeffe is a strong team leader, with great strategic intelligence. Jemma Goddard is a very engaged, knowledgeable associate, keeping everyone else on their toes – she is someone you want on your side.

— Legal 500, 2021

"Wedlake Bell LLP has ‘a very strong practice’ led by Andrew O’Keeffe, who is ‘extremely experienced and a formidable opponent’. "

— Legal 500, 2017

"Also recommended is the ‘very knowledgeable’ Caroline Miller, who ‘deals with her clients well, is immaculately prepared for each case and fights hard for her clients’."

— Legal 500, 2017

"O’Keeffe specialises in contentious probate matters and has extensive experience in trust disputes, the administration of estates, and claims under the Inheritance Act 1975."

— Legal 500, 2017