Humblestone v Martin Tolhurst Partnership (A Firm): ChD 5 Feb 2004

The solicitors sent a will to the client for execution, but failed to notice on its return that it had not been properly executed, the signature not being that of the client.
Held: The solicitors were under a duty to ensure that the will would ostensibly have been properly executed according to the facts known to them. In this case such a duty was assumed additionally by the solicitor checking it. The solicitor was liable.

Mann, The Honourable Mr Justice Mann
[2004] EWHC 151 (Ch), Times 27-Feb-2004, Gazette 04-Mar-2004
England and Wales
CitedWhite and Another v Jones and Another HL 16-Feb-1995
Will Drafter liable in Negligence to Beneficiary
A solicitor drawing a will may be liable in negligence to a potential beneficiary, having unduly delayed in the drawing of the will. The Hedley Byrne principle was ‘founded upon an assumption of responsibility.’ Obligations may occasionally arise . .
CitedRoss v Caunters (a firm) ChD 1979
The court upheld a finding of negligence against a firm of solicitors for failing to ensure the correct attestation of a will, and also the award of damages in favour of a disappointed beneficiary.
A solicitor owes a duty of care to the party . .
CitedHemmens v Wilson Browne (A Firm) ChD 30-Jun-1993
A solicitor was not liable in negligence, where his mistake might be yet be rectified; this was an inter vivos transaction and the parties could still resolve the position. Though a solicitor had a duty to the beneficiary of a settlement, the . .
CitedGibbons and Another v Nelsons (A Firm) and Another ChD 21-Apr-2000
The claimant was potentially interested in a fund as a beneficiary if her sister had exercised a power of appointment in her favour. She claimed that one firm of solicitors, who drafted a Will in 1986 for her sister, were negligent because that Will . .
CitedCarr-Glynn v Frearsons (a Firm) CA 29-Jul-1998
The solicitors had failed to advise the testator to issue a notice of severance of a joint tenancy, with the result that the house passed outside the will.
Held: The plaintiff did have a remedy. ‘The duty owed by the solicitors to the testator . .
CitedGray v Richards Butler (A Firm) ChD 24-Jun-1996
Solicitors were not entitled to payment of their costs in the administration of the estate after the will had been challenged. . .
CitedSouth Australia Asset Management Corporation v York Montague Ltd etc HL 24-Jun-1996
Limits of Damages for Negligent Valuations
Damages for negligent valuations are limited to the foreseeable consequences of advice, and do not include losses arising from a general fall in values. Valuation is seldom an exact science, and within a band of figures valuers may differ without . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Wills and Probate, Professional Negligence

Updated: 12 January 2022; Ref: scu.193396