Increase in contentious probate cases

8th March 2024

We wrote last year explaining the reasons behind the increasing number of contentious probate claims and why this trend was set to continue (see this article here). Recently released statistics have now shown that the amount of cases which went to trial has indeed increased dramatically, up around 35% in the five years from 2017 (145 cases) to 2022 (195 cases). Some estimates suggest that there may be in excess of 10,000 inheritance disputes each year, with the vast majority of claims being settled before they reach Court.

Because tensions can be high, particularly as many inheritance disputes involve close family members and the costs can eat into a potential inheritance, these disputes benefit greatly from the early use of alternative dispute resolution (‘ADR’) methods, particularly mediation. Mediation involves a neutral third party assisting the parties to resolve their disputes. It’s a flexible, confidential process where the parties can reach solutions, including solutions which cannot be ordered by a court. It is therefore a very useful tool in these kinds of disputes where it can also be possible to repair fractured relationships. Mediation has a high success rate for the resolution of disputes making it both a cost and time effective solution for litigating parties.

For more information about making a contentious probate claim or mediation contact our probate dispute specialists on 0161 832 3434.

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