Skip to content
Freeths - Law firm

Private Client Dispute Resolution Oxford – A year in review

As the end of 2023 draws closer, I want to give recognition to the amazing team that we have in Private Client Dispute Resolution Oxford and highlight some of our key cases from 2023.

The team have had an exceptionally busy year, marked by a surge in cases and heightened public awareness surrounding contentious probate matters. The rise in mainstream media coverage, with television shows such as “Inheritance Wars” and “The Inheritance” has brought the possibility of challenging a Will, Trust and Estate into the spotlight. As a result, more people are now aware of these rights and potential avenues for seeking a resolution in these complex disputes. The team has been proactive in addressing this increased demand, providing expert, tailored guidance and support to clients navigating the intricate landscape of contentious probate disputes.

Particular cases of note include

  • Acting for the widow in a £100 million Inheritance Act dispute brought by the deceased’s adult daughter.
  • Acting for the Trustees in a £17 million Trust Dispute where the Trustees were accused of selling Trust assets at an under value.
  • Acting for the executors in a £13 million estate dispute where the deceased’s children are bringing a challenge against the validity of the Will on the grounds of lack of testamentary capacity.
  • Acting for the beneficiaries of a £42 million Trust in opposing an application for the Trustees to be removed.
  • Acting for the litigation friend of a protected party in a £14.5 million Inheritance Act dispute brought by the deceased’s adult children.
  • Acting for the executors in a £2.5 million estate dispute where the Will is being challenged on the ground of lack of testamentary capacity, want of knowledge and approval and undue influence.
  • Acting for the executors of an estate worth £9 million in relation to a blessing application.
  • Acting for the Spouse in bringing an Inheritance Act claim against an estate estimated to be worth £10 million.

The team’s commitment to excellence continues to be acknowledged, as we maintained our Band 1 ranking in Chambers and Legal 500 for a combined 8 years. This recognition reaffirms our status as leading practitioners in contentious trusts and estates. Furthermore, Sally Goodger and I have both been personally recognised in the Directories as a “Leading individual” and “Next Generation Partner. The team’s clients and contacts provided the following testimonies in support of the team’s top tier ranking.

Sally Goodger is excellent and a pleasure to work with.”

Sally Goodger brings a wealth of experience to the team, having particular aptitude for clients in the charity sector.”

Sarah Foster is both deeply experienced and direct and practical in her approach. Sally Goodger is hard-working and unflappable even in the most stressful situations.”

Freeths is a first-rate regional firm in this area. They are frequently brought in as independent trustees and executors where there is irreconcilable conflict amongst the existing parties, which is testament to their experience and skill.”

Their vast knowledge means that they are well prepared for every difficult situation which might arise. The firm also has a very strong non-contentious team which is invaluable in supporting with tax and trust advice where, as is often the case, it is needed in a litigation context

With a growing client base, my team continued to strengthen their resources and we welcomed Charlotte Flynn, an associate specialising in contentious probate matters. Charlotte is a recommended lawyer in the Legal 500 2024 guide, who noted her as “a name to note, having only qualified in December 2022”.

With another successful year coming to a close, the Oxford PCDR team look forward to continuing servicing their clients, both old and new throughout 2024 and I thank all of my team for their individual efforts and commitment.


If you would like further information on the services provided by our PCDR team, please click here alternatively please call 0345 009 4376 if you would like to discuss your contentious probate dispute with an experienced lawyer.


The content of this page is a summary of the law in force at the date of publication and is not exhaustive, nor does it contain definitive advice. Specialist legal advice should be sought in relation to any queries that may arise.

Author: Sarah Foster

Managing Partner - Oxford & Joint Head of Private Client Services

Client service

‘Doing the right thing’ is at the heart of Freeths. Find out more about our excellent client service and the strong set of values that guide the way we work.

Our values

arrow

Talk to us

Freeths are a leading national law firm with 13 offices across the UK. If you have a query about our services or just want to find out more, why not give us a call?

Contact: 03301 001 014

Choose an office:

Portfolio close
People CV Email

Remove All


Click here to email this list of people to a colleague.