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Alex specialises in resolving disputes involving legacies, trusts and estate administration. Her work includes claims relating to the construction and validity of wills and trust documents (often involving questions of capacity, undue influence and fraud), Inheritance Act claims, actions by or against executors and trustees (including claims for breach of duty), claims relating to disputed lifetime transactions that affect the value of an estate or trust, professional negligence claims and claims based on a proprietary estoppel.
Alex read Law at Bristol University and qualified as a solicitor in March 2005. She joined Foot Anstey in November 2014.
Alex has particular experience of advising charities and trustees of landed estates. She also advises trustees and beneficiaries involved in cross border trust disputes, drawing on experience she gained while on secondment with the litigation team of a leading Channel Island law firm.
Alex is a member of the Association of Contentious Trust and Probate Specialists (ACTAPS) and a student member of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP).
- Acted for claimant beneficiaries of an estate who succeeded in their application to the Court for a declaration that a payment made by a deceased lady to her cohabitee during her lifetime was void for undue influence and was instead held on trust for her estate
- Advised the beneficiary of a trust in relation to breach of trust and professional negligence claims against the trustees (these claims concerned investments and tax advice provided to a non-domiciled UK resident), together with an application to remove and replace the trustees
- Secured the removal of an executor that had attempted to defraud beneficiaries of an estate, with orders requiring him to deliver up estate assets and documents
- Acted for the successful defendants in an action to challenge the validity of a will on the grounds of forgery and lack of capacity
- Advising claimants, defendants and litigation friends in claims under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 by spouses, cohabitees and children of the deceased, including claims by adult children. Often, such claims involve considering the needs of individuals with a disability, the implications of the estate being comprised of foreign assets and/or of the deceased having placed assets in a limited company
- Acted for beneficiaries in securing a substantial reduction of costs charged to an estate by a solicitor executor
- Advised the trustees of an offshore Employee Benefit Trust in relation to a claim by one of the beneficiaries that the trustees had acted in breach of their duties when investing funds. The claim involved complex arguments about limitation and, following an exchange of correspondence, it was withdrawn by the beneficiary concerned
- Acted for the trustees of a landed estate in relation to a successful application under the Variation of Trusts Act 1958 to vary the terms of two trusts. This required a detailed consideration of the likely effect of the proposed variation on different classes of beneficiary and the estate as a whole