Inheritance disputes

We offer clear advice and sound strategies and effective court representation in disputes involving deceased estates.

Certain family members who have been left without adequate provision from an estate may be able to challenge a Will or the laws of intestacy. Strict time limits apply, so seek advice as early as possible.

The Court will consider all the circumstances of the case to determine whether the Will or the laws of intestacy make adequate provision for the proper maintenance, support, education or advancement in life of the applicant. If the Court finds that an adequate provision has not been made for the applicant, it will effectively re-write the Will so that it reflects what a wise and just testator would have done.

You should also obtain legal advice if:

  • you are not certain that the deceased was of full mental capacity when the Will was signed;
  • you are unsure whether the Will is the last Will of the deceased or there is any evidence the deceased wished to revoke the Will; or
  • the Will is vague or unclear.

our services

How we can help you

See us for a consultation to find out where you stand.

Initial consultation

$385 +GST

We will give you initial advice about whether the will is open to challenge and next steps.

Our fee includes:

  • A meeting up to 60 minutes at our office during which we will provide you with initial advice; and
  • an estimate of costs for future representation.

What to bring to the consultation:

  • your photo identification;
  • copy of the will being challenged (if available);
  • any relevant correspondence or other documents.

Why choose us

Our experienced lawyers provide great service at competitive prices.
01.
Benefit from our experience

We’re a law firm with more than 35 years’ experience in litigation and dispute resolution. From straightforward debt collection to Supreme Court trials, these are core services of our firm.

02.
Excellent value for money

We price our services fairly and transparently. We advertise fixed prices for standard services. Otherwise, we will analyse your requirements before issuing a written quote.

03.
100s of happy clients

Our goal is to anticipate your needs and exceed your expectations. We offer friendly and efficient service. Read what our clients say.

Meet our team

We’re a tight-knit, multi-disciplinary team of lawyers, legal executives, accountants and software developers.  We’re also passionate community leaders, sportspeople, podcasters, musicians, parents… and proud that these interests inform our professional lives.

Senior Associate
Nigel is an experienced lawyer who leads the firm’s litigation and dispute resolution team. Having worked for Birman & Ride since 2011, he has experience in a wide variety of litigation matters including deceased estate litigation, family provision claims,……
Legal Executive
Angus joined the team in 2018 as part of the firm’s law cadetship program. He holds a Bachelor of Arts from UWA, majoring in Politics & International Relations and Business Law, and is currently studying the Juris Doctor at……
Legal Executive
Grace joined Birman & Ride in 2020 as part of the firm’s law cadetship program. Grace comes from a background of hospitality and retail work, where she gained valuable skills in customer service. At Birman & Ride, Grace works……
Lawyer
Sriram Srikrishnan (Sri) is a lawyer at Birman & Ride and works in the Wills and Estates and Litigation teams. Sri assists people to prepare Wills, applications for Probate and administer deceased estates. He also enjoys being creative with……

FAQs

If you intend to challenge a will, time is of the essence. You must apply within 6 months from the date of any grant of Probate or Letters of Administration (although the Court has a discretion to extend the deadline).

As an executor, you will need to be actively involved in the court proceedings. Your role is two-fold: to provide information regarding the value and nature of the estate and to defend the existing will. In most cases, an executor will be entitled to have their legal costs paid from the estate, irrespective of the outcome of the proceedings.

A beneficiary of a challenged will does not need to actively participate in the proceedings. However, if the Court upholds the challenge, the amount you will receive under the will may be reduced. For this reason, you may want to present your financial and personal circumstances to the Court to persuade it not to reduce your entitlement.

The Court's will first consider whether the testator has made an adequate provision for you in your particular circumstances. The Court will consider:

  • your financial position, level of education and age;
  • the provision made for you in the will (if any);
  • the relationship the testator had with you and the other beneficiaries;
  • the value and nature of the estate;
  • any contribution you have made to the testator’s assets;
  • the needs of other family members; and
  • any conduct that you have engaged in that may disentitle you to a share of the estate.

If the Court finds that an adequate provision has not been made for you, it will effectively re-write the will so that it reflects what a wise and just testator would have done.

You may be able to challenge a will if you have one of the following relationships with the testator:

  • married or de facto partner immediately before the testator’s death;
  • a former spouse or former de facto partner if you received or were entitled to receive maintenance from the testator;
  • a child;
  • a grandchild or stepchild (in certain circumstances); and
  • a parent, natural or by marriage.

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Testimonials

What our clients say

Hi Nigel, What a fantastic outcome. We weren’t expecting that – such an amazing turn-around! We are so grateful you took on our case and for the steps you put in place along the way. We really are on a high and can’t wipe the smile off our faces, a huge weight has been lifted off our shoulders. Please also extend our heartfelt thanks to Angus Edwards and the Birman & Ride family for helping us through a challenging time and getting our life back on track.
Mr and Mrs P
March 17, 2021
Dear Nigel, I just want to tell you how grateful I am to have had you in my corner, and to say I can’t thank you enough.
Ms B
March 17, 2021
I found your phone number on a website as I was searching for someone in W.A to talk with us. My mother and I spoke with Nigel over the phone. While we were disappointed in the outcome (though not surprised), we found that Nigel asked clarifying and probing questions to make sure he had a very good understanding of our situation. He explained things to us very clearly and precisely and gave us the opportunity to also to question, clarify and understand. Mum commented that she found Nigel easy to listen too and that she had a good understanding of his explanations. We were really very satisfied with the service that was given.
Rosemary Doherty
February 16, 2021
Very professional service and helpful manner by all staff I spoke with. The only delay was due to a somewhat pedantic government department! I will use the services again and will inform others should they ask for a recommendation.
Dr E
November 7, 2020
Thankyou so much for seeing me today Angus and Nigel . I found your service extremely caring , professional and sensitive . I especially appreciated your detailed family tree of origin …… being a nurse for over 40 years and to know what you are dealing with a detailed history is so important .  Thankyou once again for such a positive experience .
Ms T (Inheritance Dispute)
October 21, 2020
Dear Nigel, as the executor of [estate] I would like to thank you for your advice and handling of the probate process. It is rare, if at all, that we as individuals get to deal with the probate process and have to handle the often varying differences and demands of beneficiaries. It is for this reason we chose Birman & Ride and I thank you especially for your advice, experience, and patience in dealing with the other beneficiaries. Again, thank you for your services.
Ms K
October 12, 2020

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