Estate Law and Litigation

Wills Contests:

– claims to set aside wills as invalid on grounds of mental incapacity or undue influence and coercion

Probate Applications (i.e. applications for certificate of estate trustee):

1. where there is a will – to obtain court sanction/endorsement to administer an estate in accordance with the will

2. where there is no will (an intestacy) – to obtain a court order appointing a personal representative (usually a family member) to administer an estate

Dependant Support Claims

– by dependants of the deceased for whom adequate provision was not made by the deceased

Guardianship Applications (where the incapable person does not have powers of attorney – appointing third parties, usually family members, to act as guardians):

1. for personal care: to care for an incapable person’s well-being (eg. healthcare, living arrangements, nutrition, hygiene); or

2. for property: controlling and protecting assets, securing income, paying expenses etc.

Passing of Accounts

– applications for court orders requiring executors or trustees to disclose their financial records of an estate or trust

Photo: Justin Sewell. Flickr Creative Commons License. Cropped; changed to black and white.