Skip to main content
Get in touch
  • Get in touch or find your nearest office

  • Preston Office
    1a Chapel Street Winckley Square PR1 8BU
  • Clitheroe Office
    21 Church Street Clitheroe BB7 2DF
  • Lancaster Office
    21 Castle Hill Lancaster LA1 1YN
  • Kendal Office
    Bridge Mills, Stramongate Kendal LA9 4BD
  • Garstang Office
    Cherestanc Square, Rope Walk Garstang Preston PR3 1EF

Request a call back

Introduction to Overseas Wills and Probate

Wills and Probate Disputes for Expatriates and others interested in English Estates

Harrison Drury act for parties resident across the world in respect of all forms of disputed estates. The disputed estate must be based in England and Wales.  It does not matter if a Will governs the estate or if no Will was ever made.

English Estates

Whilst it does not matter where you may live, we can only act in respect of estates that fit the following criteria:

  • One or more of the assets are situated in England and/or Wales
  • The person who has died was domiciled in England and/or Wales
  • A grant of representation has been issued or is capable of being issued in England and/or Wales.

We are unable to deal with estates anywhere else in the UK.

Typical issues concerning English Estates

If you are looking at this page then the chances are that you are resident overseas and may fall into one of the following categories:

  • An existing beneficiary of an estate in England and/or Wales.
  • Someone who might have expected to have been left something by someone who has died, either under a Will or, where there is no Will then under the Intestacy Rules
  • A potential beneficiary who has not been left enough for their maintenance.
  • The parent or guardian of a child under 18 who has been left nothing or something insufficient from an estate, typically that of another parent.
  • A spouse of the person who has died, regardless of whether you were estranged or divorced.
  • A possible beneficiary promised certain gifts by the person who has died upon their death but who did not receive that gift(s) under the Will or Intestacy Rules.
  • A family member or friend of the person who has died concerned by the damaging actions of other family members in the UK.
  • Someone having concerns about the way the Will was prepared.
  • An existing beneficiary of an estate against which someone else has advanced a claim.
  • An executor appointed under a Will or someone entitled to a grant under the Intestacy Rules.
  • A creditor of the person who has died.
  • A beneficiary of an estate where you have concerns about the way the executor is dealing with matters or where you feel you are being kept in the dark.

You may be feeling isolated and unable to exercise control as the estate is dealt with by English lawyers or by remote family members who are not communicating with you.

You may feel that as a person living abroad, you do not have any legal standing to make a claim against an estate in England and/or Wales or to have a say about any claim made in England and/or Wales that effectively competes against your rights under the Will or under the Intestacy Rules.

Harrison Drury has over many years acted for clients resident abroad either in pursuing their own claims against estates over here or resisting claims made which would impact upon their own beneficial entitlements.

Legal 500 Recommended

Legal 500 Recommended Lawyer

Our Legal 500 Recommended Lawyer, Edward Stanley, and our Overseas Wills and Probate specialists are entirely familiar with the special needs of those challenging an estate or defending such a challenge whilst being resident abroad.

Harrison Drury is a highly reputable, award-winning law firm with a specialist department dedicated to this area of the law.  We are registered with the Law Society in England and Wales.  We are Lexcel accredited.

“Edward Stanley is a tenacious litigator who approaches litigation in an extremely thorough and measured way.”

“Edward Stanley is exceptionally knowledgeable and approachable.”

The firm handles highly complex and sensitive cases, often including a cross-border element.”


Case Studies

Please click here to view our case studies.

If you need any further information regarding inheritance disputes please do not hesitate to contact us.


There are a number of ways in which the legal costs of dealing with your case could be funded. We always do our best to be flexible although this is not always possible. Funding arrangements are case-specific. We will be able to discuss this with you once we have more details.

Availability to suit you, regardless of the time difference

We understand that time differences could be a concern.  Here at Harrison Drury we are contactable via phone, email and Skype. We are happy to work with you as far as we possibly can at mutually convenient times that take account of time differences.  

If you would like to speak to us then then please get in touch. We will respond to you within 24 hours.

We look forward to being able to work with you.


Manage your privacy

How we handle your personal data

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) gives you more control over how companies like ours use your personal information and makes it quicker and easier for you to check and update the information we hold about you.

As part of our service to you, we will continue to collect, use, store and share your data safely and securely. This doesn’t require any action on your part.

For more detailed information view our Privacy Hub