We offer expert and sensitive legal advice for inheritance and probate disputes as well as complex trust matters. We have experience in acting for executors, beneficiaries, and trustees.

We are one of the few firms in Reading with a dedicated department of contentious probate specialists.

Unfortunately, disputes over Wills, Trusts and Inheritance are increasingly common as families become more dispersed and their structures more complicated. Contesting a Will, Trust or Inheritance, whether you are bringing the claim or on the receiving end of it, is never an easy process.

Our dedicated Contentious Probate team, led by Hilary Buckle and Justin Sadler, and supported by Nicholas Buckle, and Chris Miller, is here to help. 

Hilary is a qualified member of ACTAPS (the Association of Contentious Trusts and Probate Specialists), which is the kite mark of excellence in this specialist area of law. Nicholas Buckle is a solicitor who deals exclusively with these contentious matters and is assisted by the Dispute Resolution team and our trust expert, Jane Whitfield.

How can we help you?

Fixed fee meetings

Initial advice can be given via a one-hour fixed fee meeting for £95. Thereafter, we will give you an estimate and we will not exceed that estimate without getting your permission first.

If appropriate, we will offer you a fixed fee for a fixed amount of work. We also offer Pay As You Go Legal Service, whereby you only pay for the legal services you want us to help you with, if you decide to do some of the routine work yourself and feel able to do so.

If you are concerned about costs, please be assured that we will always provide you with an estimate based on the details of your case and our previous experience. It may be possible to fund the case through legal expenses insurance, which could even be tied into your home insurance policy.

Areas of expertise

Our team can advise you on all aspects in this area, including the following:

  • The deceased has not made sufficient provision for you in their will; or the Intestacy Rules (where a will is invalid or does not exist) do not sufficiently provide for you. This could be because of a change in your circumstances or because you were financially dependent on the deceased;
  • The deceased made promises to you when they were still alive which have not been kept in the will, particularly with regard to the disposal of the estate;
  • The will was not signed properly or is otherwise invalid;
  • There is a factual error in the will, indicating a claim for amending the will or trust;
  • The original will has been lost;
  • You believe that the deceased did not have the mental capacity to make a will;
  • Someone has coerced the deceased into making a will.
  • Disputes over the identification of beneficiaries;
  • Breaches of trust or a need to remove or substitute executors, personal representatives or trustees who are failing to act appropriately;
  • Disputes relating to trusts and charities or statutory wills;
  • Professional negligence claims relating to trusts and estates.

Why choose Barrett & Co?

We are down-to-earth and approachable, and we are experts in this field. We are the most reviewed firm in Reading on Google and have one of the highest average ratings. 

Importantly, we have a proven track record in these matters. Some examples of successful outcomes we have secured for our clients are listed below:

  • Acting for the daughter of the deceased who was successful in replacing the executors of her mother’s estate and replacing them with an independent professional
  • Acting for a testator in a complex statutory will matter with several interested parties
  • Securing the arrest of a respondent in probate proceedings where he failed to appear at court
  • Securing a favourable settlement for a claimant in complex probate proceedings involving assets overseas
  • Obtaining possession of a property for our client in an estate where an executor would not vacate the property
  • Obtaining a six-figure sum for a client where she had not received her share of an estate

Get in touch

Hilary is the head of the Private Client and Contentious Probate teams, and deals with all aspects of Private Client work.

If you would like to know more or arrange a fixed fee appointment, please call us on 01189  589711. Or email Hilary Buckle at [email protected]

Contentious Probate Testimonials

I had a very delicate but deeply personal matter that I needed professional legal help with. In short it involved a matter of my father's will, inheritance and money owed to me from a sibling. After much research I contacted Justin at Barrett and co. After an hours consultation with him and Hilary Buckle I gained the confidence to take further steps. It was in their mannerism and approach and they even gave me a written quote detailing exactly what stage they would charge me for, and even this quote was much lower than other specialist solicitors. They were so considerate with me and their reputation so high that my sister instantly gave me large sum of money owed to me and as a bonus all siblings have begun mending our relationship.

February 2020
– Azam Khan

I live in Adelaide, South Australia and found Barrett and Co through the internet. I needed help with a matter in England.

The early advice and guidance from Nick and his colleagues, ensured I was well prepared for our one-hour online meeting. During this meeting, they addressed all my concerns and outlined the options available to me. This gave me the confidence, to make sound decisions as I move forward with my matter and happy in the knowledge that I can contact them again, should I require further advice.

I have the highest regard for their professionalism and the respectful way they dealt with me during our meeting, and I happily recommend them to anyone needing legal advice.

December 2020
– Anonymous

  • 5 star review  Barrett and Co handled my divorce and other related matters between July 2019 and May 2021. I felt well-supported throughout my case, and was treated with the utmost empathy and understanding through a difficult time. Aadil Khan managed my case during the last few months and was instrumental in securing a fair outcome for me. I was provided with timely, professional and targeted guidance, which helped me navigate a complex case. Thanks for all your support!

    thumb Memoona Khan
    6/10/2021
  • 5 star review  I made a Will with the aid of Barrett & Co solicitors LLP and ,more recently, I added a Codicil. On each occasion I was treated with the utmost respect and I was given very sound advice. This firm also assisted in the sale of my house in a very efficient way. I highly recommend this firm for all legal needs.

    thumb Molly Walters
    5/11/2021
  • 5 star review  The professional and personal attention we got from Barrett & Co was exceptional. From my first contact with Claire who arranged the first online meeting with Juliette who then handled all our needs with great care and considerstion for the delicate time we were going through. Juliette was very considerate of my dads slight language barrier with detailed help along the way. I would highly recommend them.

    thumb Gaby Moretti
    5/08/2021
  • 5 star review  We contacted Barrett & Co to get advice on Wills and Power of Attorneys. Our primary contact was Juliette who was approachable and professional throughout the process. She gave advice based upon our particular circumstances and not just generic feedback. I would highly recommend Juliette and Barrett & Co.

    thumb Antonio Lucido
    4/28/2021
  • 5 star review  We worked with Emma Docking to sell and buy properties recently. In spite of the hugely complicated process (our properties are somewhat unusual), we had consistent and clear communication from Emma and Berrett and co throughout. They were very responsive and kept us up to date. Would recommend!

    thumb Abby Russell
    4/22/2021
  • 5 star review  Great experience having Barrett & Co do the conveyancing for our property purchase. Emma, Alan and Richard were responsive, helpful, patient and provided a great deal of knowledge throughout the entire process.

    thumb Michal Bartlomowicz
    4/18/2021
  • 5 star review  We used Barrett & Co re conveyancing for the purchase of our new home. Richard Ince and his team, Rebecca P and Emma D were brilliant from start to finish. They were patient and clear in their explanations throughout, and ensured that all our queries were addressed, large or small........ A professional and friendly service - Thank you!

    thumb Kashif Subhan
    4/10/2021
  • 5 star review  We used Barrett & Co conveyancing services to buy our first house and they made the process really easy for us, and we completed within the period of time we were hoping for from the start. Piers and Emma were very nice and helpful, and we thoroughly recommend them.

    thumb Ines AlvarezRodrigo
    3/27/2021