This is for various reasons, including an increase in blended families, the increase in property prices, the cost of living crisis, reliance or expectation on an inheritance and an increase in homemade/DIY wills. In addition, the Will, if there is one, may be complex, especially if the Testator was high net worth and/or had business interests.
The issue faced by the solicitor administering a contentious estate is to know what is in the estate and whether a situation such as abatement will arise. Understanding the exact position is particularly important where there are specific bequests of assets to beneficiaries that are different to residuary beneficiaries. The accounting for the estate can become very complex on these types of estates.
An accountant with experience of complex estate accounting can work alongside the solicitor to assist in keeping the accounts up-to-date at regular points thus easing some of the stress of administering these difficult estates. Where the accountant also carries out non-contentious probate work too, they are ideally placed as they understand the whole estate administration process and can empathetically support the solicitor in their work.
The next step
If you are a contentious probate solicitor struggling with the accounting for your estates, please get in touch and we can see how we can help.
For any questions relating to this blog please contact Jane Symonds.