Assistance in Contesting a Will in Melbourne

It is usually the will of a person to decide who they leave the assets with. However, there are provisions in law by which the will can be contested. Typically, there is a process by which one can contest a will in Victoria. Like in most other places in the world, Victoria also has specific laws that protect people who have been unfairly left out of a will or have been left with the bare minimum. Sometimes, some circumstances can provide grounds for rightfully challenging a will. As we all know, if a person dies with a will, the will is contested against the executor of the estate named in the will. However, if there is no will, then the will is contested against the Administrator of the intestate estate. At Daniel Lawyers & Associates, we have skilled as well as extensively experienced lawyers who can provide competent legal representation to clients who wish to contest a will.

How to contest a will?

Typically, most people who wish to contest a will would approach the court. However, there are also situations where some people would wish to avoid that hassle of the court system and would choose mediation instead. However, our Daniel Lawyers & Associates lawyers believe that it’s often necessary to start with court proceedings and then move into mediation. The court system usually provides a structured framework, which is often essential for such cases.
Essentially, to prove grounds for contesting a will, it is pivotal to demonstrate the following:

  • The deceased had died in Victoria and had assets there.
  • You are eligible to claim.
  • The deceased had a duty to provide proper maintenance and support to the client.
  • The deceased has provided less than what the client needs to live comfortably and decently according to the standard of living they were accustomed to during the deceased’s lifetime, or by providing nothing at all, the deceased has failed to provide proper maintenance and support for the client.

Who can contest a will?

In earlier times, anybody who had a remote connection with the deceased could contest a will. However, Victorian State has amended its laws to create a process for identifying eligible successors over the years. Presently, there are four groups of people who can potentially challenge a will, and they are:

  • A spouse or domestic partner
  • A child, stepchild, or grandchild
  • A former spouse or domestic partner
  • A registered carer

Apart from the groups mentioned above, our lawyers at Daniel Lawyers & Associates also have identified other areas where the will can be challenged, and these include the following:

1. Lack of capacity

Suppose the will-maker lacked capacity, the will can be contested. It is an incredibly valid claim if the client was named a beneficiary in a previous version of a will but later removed.

2. Undue influence

This is if the client feels that the will was made under coercion, where they were forced to leave the client out of the will.

3. Breach of Trust

A beneficiary of a will can always have an executor removed if the beneficiary can prove that the executor was not doing their job fairly and adequately.

Contesting Time in Victoria

Suppose if people had been wrongly left out or not treated fairly, the time limit to contest a will is 6 months from the date probate has been granted. Ordinarily, a claim is never made beyond the 6-months. However, there are also some cases where approval had to be obtained from the Supreme Court after 6-months. Here, it is up to the person making a claim to show reasons for their delay in making the claim. Furthermore, if the client is contesting a will due to lack of capacity or in undue influence, a claim should be made before the probate is granted.
It is also important to know that the amount the client may be awarded would largely depend on the strength of the obligation that the deceased had for the client. Additionally, that and the financial need of the client is also taken into account. These include the value of client’s assets, the level of debts, their income, their expenses, such as living and medical expenses, and any future contingencies they may face are all taken into account.
Therefore, experienced lawyers at Daniel Lawyers & Associates know the importance of understanding the recommendations and opinions of at least a few people. Essentially, one should hire a skilled lawyer to contest a will in Melbourne using complex claims. Get in touch with us on (03) 9687 3211 for a 30-minute phone consultation or email us at enquiries@daniellawyers.com.au.

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Joanne is very diligent in making sure all legal aspects are fully satisfied. Easy to do business with. Happy with the probate support she provided.
Wes Kosior
Wes Kosior
2021-07-07
I am very happy with the service provided to my business. Daniel Lawyers & Associates went out of their way to ensure all transactions fulfil with care. Highly recommend Daniel Lawyers Service to anyone/business. Thank you so much Sinan and the friendly team.
PASEFIKA Link
PASEFIKA Link
2021-05-31
I have had a very good discussion with Sinan who explained absolutely everything is great detail. I have obtained all that I need to decide on how to proceed going forward. He's very nice and courteous and a good listener. Totally enjoyable session and I have no issues getting his service again if need be in the future. Regards, Khanh
khanh tran
khanh tran
2020-12-08
Thank you very much It was a pleasure dealing with Danial lawyers (Sinan Daniel)
rasha suliman
rasha suliman
2020-08-25
Joanne is one of the most polite, caring and understanding legal professionals I have ever had the pleasure of dealing with. She turned what looked like a non-winnable case into a successful case. I found her amazing, understanding and very considerate to the circumstances that had occurred. I would recommend her to anyone without a second thought. My sincere thanks Joanne.
Marie Paget
Marie Paget
2020-06-25
Thankfully we have had very little dealings with lawyers so really wasn’t sure what to expect when engaging Joanne and her team to assist us with probate and the sale of our estate. I sent out several web enquiries and Joanne was only one of a very few that responded. So without hesitation we engaged the practise. Joanne is incredibly efficient with most emails literally getting answered within 30 seconds. She answers all queries with consummate professionalism and at no point have we been left wondering how things work during this very arduous process. Sometimes if we had forgotten to sign a form she would even send a staff member over to home to get us to sign. We have both been overwhelmed at her service and also the fees which are so much less then the bigger firms. We would recommend her and her team in a heartbeat.
Jas P
Jas P
2019-03-27
Joanne was a very professional throughout my legal process and she was very confident when she was giving me the legal advise. I'm very satisfied customer and i wish Joanne very best in her business and her family.
kice markovski
kice markovski
2018-05-11