Wills and Probate in UK Law

Leading Cases
  • Gill v Woodall & Others
    • Court of Appeal (Civil Division)
    • 14 December 2010

    Wills frequently give rise to feelings of disappointment or worse on the part of relatives and other would-be beneficiaries.

  • Whishaw and Another v Stephens and Others
    • House of Lords
    • 31 October 1968

    It is then the duty of the Court by the exercise of its judicial knowledge and experience in the relevant matter, innate commonsense and desire to make sense of the settlor's or parties' expressed intentions, however obscure and ambiguous the language that may have been used, to give a reasonable meaning to that language if it can do so without doing complete violence to it.

  • Gillett v Holt
    • Court of Appeal (Civil Division)
    • 08 March 2000

    Both sides are agreed on that, and in the course of the oral argument in this court it repeatedly became apparent that the quality of the relevant assurances may influence the issue of reliance, that reliance and detriment are often intertwined, and that whether there is a distinct need for a 'mutual understanding' may depend on how the other elements are formulated and understood.

  • Marley v Rawlings and another
    • Supreme Court
    • 22 January 2014

    When it comes to interpreting wills, it seems to me that the approach should be the same. Whether the document in question is a commercial contract or a will, the aim is to identify the intention of the party or parties to the document by interpreting the words used in their documentary, factual and commercial context. As Lord Hoffmann said in Kirin-Amgen Inc v Hoechst Marion Roussel Ltd [2005] 1 All ER 667, para 64,

    Of course, a contract is agreed between a number of parties, whereas a will is made by a single party. However, that distinction is an unconvincing reason for adopting a different approach in principle to interpretation of wills: it is merely one of the contextual circumstances which has to be borne in mind when interpreting the document concerned.

    In my view, at least subject to any statutory provision to the contrary, the approach to the interpretation of contracts as set out in the cases discussed in para 19 above is therefore just as appropriate for wills as it is for other unilateral documents.

    However, there is now a highly relevant statutory provision relating to the interpretation of wills, namely section 21 of the 1982 Act ("section 21"). Section 21 is headed "Interpretation of wills — general rules as to evidence", and is in the following terms:

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Legislation
  • Public Trustee Act 1906
    • UK Non-devolved
    • January 01, 1906
    ...... S-6 . Power as to granting probate. 6 Power as to granting probate. . (1) If in pursuance of any rule ...public trustee is authorised to accept by that name probates of. wills or letters of administration, the court having jurisdiction. to grant ......
  • Family Law Reform Act 1969
    • UK Non-devolved
    • January 01, 1969
    ...... S-3 . Provisions relating to wills and intestacy. 3 Provisions relating to wills and intestacy. . (1) In ...Judicature (Consolidation). Act 1925. . Section 165(1). . Probate not to be granted to. infant if appointed sole. executor until he attains ......
  • The Non-Contentious Probate (Amendment) Rules 2018
    • UK Non-devolved
    • January 01, 2018
    ......S-10 . Amendments to the Non-Contentious Probate Rules 1987: marking of wills Amendments to the Non-Contentious Probate Rules 1987: marking of wills . 10. —(1) Rule 10 (marking of wills) is amended as follows. . (2) For the ......
  • The Wills Act 1837 (Electronic Communications) (Amendment) Order 2022
    • UK Non-devolved
    • January 01, 2022
    ......(2) For article 3 substitute—. “. S-3. 3. Nothing in this Order affects—. (a) any grant of probate made; or. (b) anything done pursuant to a grant of probate,. prior to this Order coming into force.David Wolfson. Parliamentary Under Secretary of ......
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Books & Journal Articles
  • REVIEWS
    • Nbr. 23-4, July 1960
    • The Modern Law Review
    Book reviewed in this article: Judicial Review of Administrative Action. By S. A. De Smith, M.A., PH.D. Wills, Probate and Administration. A Manual of the Law. By B. S. Ker, M.A. (Cantab.) The Law ...
    ...... 0. HOOD PHILLIPS. WILLS, PROBATE AND ADMINISTRATION. A Manual of the Law. By B. S. ......
  • REVIEWS
    • Nbr. 33-1, January 1970
    • The Modern Law Review
    Precedent in English Law and Other Essays. By James Louis Montrose. Edited by H. G. Hanbury. Precedent in English Law. By Rupert Cross. Second Edition. Double Jeopardy. By Martin L. Friedland. The ...
    ...... E8 18s. net (each).] THE LAW AND PRACTICE OF NIGERIAN WILLS, PROBATE AND SUCCES- SION. By BRIAN W. HARVEY. [London: Sweet ......
  • REVIEWS
    • Nbr. 16-2, April 1953
    • The Modern Law Review
    Book reviewed in this article: PRINCIPLES OF ADMINISTRATIVE LAW. By J. A. G. GRIFFITH, LL.M. MODERN EQUITY. By H. G. HANBURY AN INTRODUCTION TO EQUITY. By G. W. KEETON. CARVER ON THE CARRIAGE OF GO...
    ...... C. SHORT FORMS OF WILLS. By HENRY BRIGHOUSE, Solicitor. Sixth Edition by EDWARD F. ......
  • Coming events.
    • Nbr. 2013, October - February 2013
    • Financial Management (UK)
    • Calendar
    ......Probate management (joint event with AAT) . 23 March, 9am . Future Inn Cabot s Hotel, Bond Street, Bristol BS1 3EN John Penley OBE will discuss wills, trusts and probate management. . Contact Suzanne Allen on +44 (0)11 7960 ......
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Forms
  • a guide for people acting without a solicitor (PA2)
    • HM Courts & Tribunals Service court and tribunal forms
    Forms and guidance on probate including fees, where to send your probate forms (PA1A and PA1P) and supplementary forms to support your application
    ...PA2. How to apply for probate –. A guide for people applying without a solicitor. Applying for the ...Useful links:. • Information on applying for probate www.gov.uk/wills-probate-inheritance. • Probate forms and leaflets ......
  • Apply for probate by post if there is a will
    • HM Courts & Tribunals Service court and tribunal forms
    Forms and guidance on probate including fees, where to send your probate forms (PA1A and PA1P) and supplementary forms to support your application
    ......anything from the original. will/codicils. Also, make sure. that you keep a copy for. yourself.  copy of any foreign wills or any wills dealing with assets held outside. A. England and Wales (and if not in English, an English translation).  n official copy (not a ......
  • a guide for people who want to challenge an application for grant on an estate (PA8)
    • HM Courts & Tribunals Service court and tribunal forms
    Forms and guidance on probate including fees, where to send your probate forms (PA1A and PA1P) and supplementary forms to support your application
    ...PA8. Stopping an application for Probate –. How to enter a Caveat. A guide for people who want to challenge an ...Useful contacts. For general guidance on wills and probate:. www.gov.uk/wills-probate-inheritance. ......
  • Apply for probate by post if there is not a will
    • HM Courts & Tribunals Service court and tribunal forms
    Forms and guidance on probate including fees, where to send your probate forms (PA1A and PA1P) and supplementary forms to support your application
    ......(IHT205 or IHT207, and IHT217 if applicable), signed by all applicants. (see additional notes in Section 6).  copy of any foreign wills or any wills dealing with assets held outside. A. England and Wales (and if not in English, an English translation).  n official copy (not a ......
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