This article was published on July 30th, 2014
Recent figures out from the Chancery Division show there were 368 claims lodged for breach of fiduciary duty in 2013, up from 107 on the previous 12 months.
Claims can be for any number of disputes including theft of assets by the executor or fraudulent distribution of assets in order to benefit certain parties over others.
So why have claims for mishandling a deceased’s estate more than tripled over the last year? Reasons for this increase have been attributed to the rise in so called DIY executors. Lay executors are people nominated by the family, often acquaintances or family members who they consider to be the best person to carry out the Will, but problems arise when they are not impartial. Claims for Will mismanagement is expected to increases as more and more people take out probate themselves.
Whilst using lay executors can save you legal fees it is turning out to be a false economy. Probate solicitors train for many years to ensure there are no mistakes when drafting Wills, that the Will is the true intent of the deceased and that emotion plays no part in the distribution of assets.
Families are complex these days and Wills can often concern two or three families if the deceased has divorced and remarried. Sometimes the amount of money at stake in an estate can tempt DIY executors to manipulate proceedings when distributing the assets for their own benefit or for one side of the family over another. Wills are also prone to be deliberately misinterpreted to favour one beneficiary over another, particularly when the deceased has a complex family.
At Thorneycroft solicitors, we understand that emotions run high at the death of a loved one and the last thing you want to be worrying about is whether your family member’s estate is being managed professionally, fairly and according to their wishes. Our experienced probate solicitors will help prevent fraud or mismanagement of the estate and ensure the wishes of the deceased are upheld.
Call us now on FREEPHONE 0800 1979 345, or complete our simple enquiry form.
We are pleased to confirm that we can now offer Standard Wills for £95 + VAT.
For more details please ring us on 0800 1979 345.