Contentious Wills Trusts & Probate


Seeking advice or representation from a barrister or solicitor, particularly when a dispute has arisen, is nearly always stressful. In the context of wills and trusts where there is often a bereavement and an underlying family conflict, it can become especially stressful. This is not helped by the fact that the language and procedure of this area of law is hedged by unfamiliar concepts and arcane procedures. Indeed it has been said that to the modern mind, understanding probate law is like trying to decipher the muffled cry of a person standing on a distant hill.

At St Philips we recognise the simple but often overlooked need to provide straightforward, practical and clear advice whatever the issue or dispute.  Our Wills and Trusts team has over 200 years of collective experience in providing advisory and litigation services relating to estates and trusts. This includes disputes as to the validity of wills, claims for financial provision from a deceased’s estate, advice as to the construction of wills and trust deeds, and claims for rectification. We also act in matters arising in the course of the administration of trusts and estates including actions to remove personal representatives and claims for breach of trust. We additionally provide tax planning and drafting services.

A cursory glance through the legal directories will reveal that from junior to senior we are highly regarded. Team members are described variously as being: an “approachable and strong advocate”, “excellent with clients”, a “Chancery mega-star” and as having “a stupendous knowledge of the law”. Nonetheless we recognise that disputes in this field are not about quotes in directories, or solely about our technical abilities; ultimately they are about real human problems. At St Philips therefore we seek to deploy our legal expertise to solve those problems efficiently, sympathetically and in a cost effective manner.