Peter Hopkins

Wills and Probate

Peter Hopkins
[email protected]
DDI: 01491 634274

Peter advises individual clients or couples on a wide range of matters for Mercers Solicitors including;

  • Wills and Letters of Wishes, including choice of guardians
  • Powers of Attorney including Lasting Powers of Attorney for Health & Welfare and LPAs for Property & Financial Affairs
  • Probate, and dealing with deceased estates, including advice on income tax, CGT, and IHT in this context
  • Advice on Deeds of Variation
  • Advice on Estate Accounts and Trust Accounts
  • Advice on setting up trusts, administering trusts, including deeds of appointment or advancement, and winding up trusts
  • General IHT tax planning advice including the use of statutory annual exemptions, normal expenditure out of income, lifetime gifts, use of Business Property Relief or Agricultural Property Relief
  • Advice about care home fees

In particular, Peter specialises in advising clients about Contentious Trusts and Estates, advising how to protect a Will from being challenged, and in particular advising about claims for;

  • Lack of testamentary capacity
  • Lack of knowledge and approval
  • Duress and undue influence
  • Fraudulent calumny
  • Mutual Wills
  • Inheritance Act claims under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependents) Act 1975

Peter also has advised a number of clients about cross-border estates, dealing with countries including France, Spain, Australia, Switzerland and America. As a result of this he has built connections with Lawyers in those countries who can assist.

Peter is an Associate Member of Solicitors for the Elderly (SFE) and a Full Member of the Society of Trust & Estate Practitioners (STEP). He has had four articles accepted for publication by the Solicitors Journal, on contentious probate matters such as Mutual Wills and on the 2017 Ilott v Mitson Supreme Court judgment. He has been accepted as a Registered Member by the committee of the Association of Contentious Trust and Probate Specialists (ACTAPS).

Peter graduated from Emmanuel College, Cambridge, and after two years with Price Waterhouse, he qualified as a solicitor with a Lincoln’s Inn firm, Dawsons, before moving to a Westminster firm, Radcliffes. Peter joined Mercers in 2000 and became a partner in 2005.

Peter also publishes updates and comments on the latest court cases and developments in the law through the firm’s Twitter account @DisputedWills. For updates on Cross-Border issues, follow the Twitter account.

What clients have said about Peter

“Peter has always maintained the highest professional standards, providing best possible service to clients, whether in providing detailed estate accounts when required or advising on the most practical solution.”

– Mr. CH of Henley


“ Peter has been our solicitor for many years now and has always been ready to help and has made our life family simple through his good advice.”

– Mr. MS of Marlow


“Thank you for guiding us through such a stressful time with such a contentious Will. Your prompt and professional service resulted in us receiving what was intended for us and which we would’ve lost without your advice. We cannot thank you enough.”

– Mrs. MW of Oxfordshire


“ Peter managed our limited budget with care, checking our accounts with forensic expertise, and advising us wisely and clearly on our choices. We won our case with costs awarded against the other party. I remain grateful for his professionalism, wisdom and intelligent care during this difficult case.”

– Mrs. JGW of Surrey


“ Peter, thank you for all your hard work getting here. Even when things got a bit bumpy, you have always been calm, helpful and informative. The experience has given me peace of mind, so I am very happy with the result. It has also been an education in law.”

– Mr. ES, Surrey