Are you looking for a solicitor to deal with a will in North Devon?

Abbie Kingdon  27-04-2020

There are several firms of solicitors in North Devon, but which should you choose? There are firms who have particular specialisms and areas of expertise, who can help you with your specific legal needs. 

At Samuels Solicitors, with our main office in Barnstaple, we have solicitors with a variety of specialisms who can help you with a wide range of legal issues that you or your family might have.

In this article we focus on two niche areas of our practice, which both involve wills and inheritance. The first is the service we provide to clients who want to make a will and the second is to look at how we can help when something goes wrong, giving rise to disputes about wills and inheritance. 


Do you need to write a new will, or update your existing will?

Your will is an incredibly personal and important document. It governs who your assets go to after you have died, and if you don't make a will, then the intestacy rules will apply. That might mean that your assets aren't distributed in the way you would have chosen.

Other life events can affect whether you need a will, or whether your will should be updated. For example, if you get divorced, you should think about how you would like to benefit your children, or your ex spouse. If you have got married, any previous will is automatically nullified and you will have to make a brand new will.

A lot of people have had a go at writing a will themselves. Sometimes this can be fine, but more often than not it can lead to problems, if the strict formalities of drafting, signing and witnessing have not been followed. Or perhaps you have been to a solicitor or another person to prepare your will, and you are worried that they may not have had the expertise to do it properly.

If you haven't got a will yet, or if you think your will might be out of date, then we can help. We have an expert team of lawyers with many years of experience in preparing and updating wills. 

Abbie Kingdon, the head of our private client department, is highly qualified and experienced solicitor, who has completed the highest level of qualifications possible with the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners. 

Our fees for writing your will are reasonable and will be agreed with you in advance. 

If you are worried that your will needs updating, we will check it for you for free. 


Do you have a dispute about a will or your inheritance?

It can be extremely distressing if you are left out of the will of a family member, or if you do not receive the inheritance you were promised, or a legacy that you have been expecting. 

There are several reasons why this type of dispute can happen:

  • Promises are made that working in the family business means you will inherit it, but this promise is not fulfilled - this can often happen with farming businesses;
  • If an elderly person is vulnerable, they can be persuaded to change their will to favour one person over another;
  • Someone may have completed a home made will, or a will with an unregulated professional, and the terms are not clear;
  • A second marriage may mean the new spouse inherits the estate, rather than the children of the first marriage, if the will is not updated; or
  • There can be questions about whether the person making the will had capacity, particularly where that person goes on to develop dementia or Alzheimer's disease.

We have helped many families come to a resolution when a will is disputed. This type of case can be very destructive and needs to be handled carefully and sensitively, as well as providing the highest level of expert advice. In many cases, we recommend mediation, which can be a very effective way for will disputes to be resolved. If you want to challenge a will, we can help. 

If you have any legal needs, contact us today. 


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