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ATE insurance for contentious trusts and probate disputes – the key points

We understand the complexities that arise in traditional Chancery litigation and can offer bespoke ATE insurance (also known as after-the-event or litigation insurance) and disbursement funding to accommodate all types of wills and probate dispute.

This includes probate cases (such as interest claims, revocation of a grant and pronouncing for or against a will), rectifying a will or to protect a will from rectification and cases being pursued under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975.

Other scenarios we are able to consider include Applications under the Tort (Interference with Goods) Act 1977, applications under the Administration of Justice Act 1985 and applications under the Law of Property Act 1925.

Why use Temple ATE insurance for contentious trusts and probate disputes?

  • No upfront cost of obtaining litigation insurance – we do not charge an assessment fee.
  • Payment of the premium is deferred until the conclusion of the case and is contingent on a successful outcome.
  • Insured clients will have access to disbursement funding from Temple Disbursement Funding, a subsidiary of Temple Legal Protection. This can be used to fund the court issue fee, expert reports and mediation without any risk to your client.

Contentious Trusts and Probate ATE Insurance Video

If you have not used Temple ATE insurance before and are wondering why you should, find out all you need to know in under 2 minutes.

Three new ways to access ATE insurance for contentious trusts and probate disputes

Designed to speed-up and simplify the process so your clients get the protection they need with the minimum of fuss, fully deferred and contingent premiums at market-leading rates and backed by a UK based “A” rated insurer- these are as follows

  • Espresso – fully delegated authority, auto disbursement funding, for an agreed case volume.
  • Concierge – bespoke underwriting, for cases with similar characteristics, faster response time
  • Solo – suitable for more valuable and complex individual cases requiring additional scrutiny


How does ATE Insurance for contentious trusts and probate disputes work?

Traditional legal expenses insurance is often referred to as Before-The-Event or ‘BTE’ cover. ATE insurance for contentious trusts and probate disputes used by solicitors is often known as After-The-Event or Litigation insurance. Whichever terminology you use, it is a tailored policy put in place with the specific aim of protecting your client from having to pay the opponent’s costs and their own disbursements if they lose their case. It is unique in that the insurance policy is only entered into after a contentious trusts and probate dispute has arisen.

How do I go about applying for ATE insurance and disbursement funding?

Temple’s new commercial ATE insurance has never been easier to utilise. With a choice of three cover options, each covering all types of commercial dispute and suitable for any retainer arrangement. your clients get the protection they need with the minimum of fuss.

The remedy my client is seeking is not damages. How is the premium funded?

Our underwriters are able to tailor the insurance and funding product to meet the needs of the case. Usually, the premium is calculated by reference to recovered damages and the client’s own costs.
If your client is seeking declaratory relief rather than damages, the premium is based either on a percentage of the limit of indemnity or your client’s incurred costs. All policies include a ‘premium cap’, limiting the premium to a specified percentage of the amount of cover.

My client is the executor, will you be able to consider offering ATE insurance?

Yes. An executor may be in the position where it is necessary to prove a will in solemn form. They may also be the defendant/respondent to a case or application brought by a beneficiary or other interested party. Costs are not always paid out of the estate and it may be necessary to consider protecting an executor from an order for costs.

My client is the defendant, will he be able to apply for ATE insurance and disbursement funding?

Yes. It is not necessary for the Insured party to be the claimant or applicant. The legal and commercial merits are the most important factors considered by our underwriters.

The outcome of the case I am instructed on will depend to a large extent on the conclusion reached by a handwriting expert; will you consider insuring it?

Yes. We will take this into account in our review of the papers, but may be assisted by sight of a draft witness statement and relevant contemporaneous evidence. Disbursement funding may be available for the expert’s fees.

My client wants to fund my cases on a traditional retainer and not on a CFA, can I still send it to you?

Temple Legal Protection prioritise the merits of the case, not the basis of the retainer you have with your client. Whilst it is a sign of confidence in a case if a firm is risking all or part of its fees, our underwriters know that in the commercial world, it is a benefit for fees to be paid in the traditional way and that such an arrangement is not indicative of a solicitor’s view of the merits and risk. We regularly insure cases where the client pays his solicitor’s fees as the case progresses.

When is the best time to take out ATE insurance?

The ATE insurance policy is purchased after a legal dispute arises and the best time to send a case to us is as soon as you are reasonably able to assess the merits of the claim. Usually, this is after your investigation and the pre-action correspondence has been completed, and before proceedings are issued. However, cases can be referred to us at any stage.

Contact our experts

If you would like more information on our ATE insurance and disbursement funding products for wills and probate litigation, or you have any other legal expenses insurance query, please email or call me on 01483 514428.

To apply for ATE insurance and disbursement funding on a case-by-case basis, please complete and send a Commercial Proposal Form to us – along with copies of the pertinent papers (e.g. a copy of the will/caveat, pre-action correspondence, pleadings etc.). If you would like to speak with an underwriter before sending the case in to us, you will find contact details below and on Our People page.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Matthew Pascall

Legal Director – Head of Commercial

Matthew Pascall

Matthew was called to the Bar in 1984 and joined Guildford Chambers two years later. Spending more than 30 years in practice there, he was listed as a Legal 500 Tier One barrister.

He joined the commercial team at Temple Legal Protection as Senior Underwriting Manager in 2017.

Matthew was appointed to Temple’s Board in December 2022 as Legal Director and Head of Commercial.

His knowledge of the commercial legal sector and litigation practice is invaluable to the business and our clients, providing specialist experience to lead the commercial litigation insurance team.