Six month inheritance time limit

“We specialise in Inheritance Act claims and are experienced in dealing with the six month time limit in inheritance cases. Call our free helpline for a case assessment on 0808 139 1596 or send us an email.”

While many people are aware of the existence of a six month inheritance time limit, there is a lot of confusion about what it actually means.

Some people assume the six month limit runs from the time of death. Others think all that needs to be done with the six months is to notify the executor of a claim. Both these assumptions are wrong.

Mistakes over time limits can be fatal to making a claim. Even cases that have legal merit can be barred as a result, so it is important to understand precisely what the six month inheritance time limit actually is.

When does the time limit start to run?

The six month inheritance time limit starts two run from the date that the grant of representation is issued. In other words the clock starts ticking when probate is granted and anyone who wants to make an Inheritance Act claim must take action within the following six months.

What must be done within the six months?

It is not sufficient to simply tell the executor or another beneficiary that you are making an Inheritance Act claim. To comply with the six month time limit you must actually make your application under the Inheritance Act. This will generally involve issuing your application in court. However, solicitors do sometimes reach an agreement that time should ‘stand still’, without the claim being prejudiced. This gives the parties the time to review the case and attempt to resolve the dispute without the court’s intervention, for instance by using mediation. However, ‘standstill agreements’ can be challenged, so they should not be entered into without input from a solicitor who specialises in Inheritance Act claims.

What can I do if I miss the six month inheritance time limit?

While many websites give the impression that the time limit is very strict and a claim will automatically fail if you miss it, the courts do in fact exercise discretion. So while you should make every effort to comply with the time limit, if you do miss it then all is not necessarily lost. Just give us a call and we will assess what can be done.

How we can help

If you have a question about the six month inheritance time limit, have missed the time limit or are simply looking for expert solicitors to deal with an Inheritance Act claim then call our free helpline for a case assessment and details of no win, no fee funding.

Six month inheritance time limit