Farming Inheritance Disputes

Agricultural land and farming businesses commonly become the subject of dispute when a family member dies.

At Michelmores, we have over 20 years’ experience in dealing with farming inheritance disputes, both bringing claims as well as defending them. In addition to having specialist expertise in contentious probate matters, we are the biggest agricultural law firm in the UK and are nationally recognised as specialists in all aspects of this area.

Whilst farming assets may have been in the family for several generations, discussions as to how they will pass on death often take place informally, without any written documentation being drawn up. The death of a family member often results in loved ones trying to deal with the emotional strain of bereavement alongside the uncertainty of what will happen to the farming assets around them.

We understand the complex issues involved with disputes concerning farms, such as cash flow, subsidies and entitlements, the various rights of occupation of land that might arise over land (such as those under the Agricultural Holdings Act 1986, the Agricultural Tenancies Act 1995 and other leases and licences), as well as having an in-depth knowledge of partnership law.

Previous clients have sought our guidance on:

  • Loved ones being “left out” of a will, or not being adequately provided for from the deceased’s estate;
  • Contesting the validity of a will;
  • Promises broken in the provision actually made under the deceased’s will;
  • Disputes between the executor(s) named under the will and beneficiaries of the estate;
  • Advising on the administration of a deceased person’s estate;
  • Acting as neutral administrator of an estate where parties are in dispute.

We pride ourselves in being able to provide a “one-stop-shop” for resolving inheritance disputes in the agricultural context and always try to achieve an amicable, out of court settlement, wherever possible. We also have a good relationship with several third party legal expenses insurers and can provide you with assistance in claiming third party funding of your dispute (provided you currently have the benefit of cover under an applicable legal expenses insurance policy).

Rajvinder Kaur
Rajvinder Kaur
Senior Associate