How to contest an Estate in Queensland if there is no Will

Dec 10, 2023

Understanding Estate Contestation

Contesting an estate, also known as challenging a will, is a complex process. It involves legal procedures and can often be emotionally draining. However, the situation becomes even more complicated when there is no will. In Queensland, the process for contesting an estate without a will involves several steps, which are detailed below.

Grounds for Contesting an Estate

Before you proceed with contesting an estate, it is crucial to understand the grounds on which you can challenge it. In Queensland, you can contest an estate if you believe that you have not been adequately provided for, or if you believe the distribution of the estate is not just or equitable. It's important to note that each case is unique and the court will consider a range of factors before making a decision.

Eligibility to Contest an Estate

To contest an estate in Queensland, you must fall within the category of an 'eligible person'. This includes a spouse, a child, a dependent, or someone who was in a close personal relationship with the deceased at the time of their death. Understanding your eligibility is an essential first step in the process.

How to Contest an Estate

Seek Legal Advice

The first step in contesting an estate without a will is to seek legal advice. A lawyer who specialises in estate law can guide you through the process and provide advice tailored to your specific circumstances.

File a Family Provision Application

Next, you will need to file a Family Provision Application with the court. This application should detail your relationship with the deceased, your financial circumstances, and why you believe you should receive a portion of the estate.

Legal paperwork

Attend a Mediation

Once the application is filed, a mediation is typically scheduled. This is an opportunity for all parties to discuss the matter and potentially reach an agreement without going to court.

Attend a Court Hearing

If no agreement is reached during mediation, the matter will proceed to a court hearing. The court will then make a decision based on the evidence presented.

Time Limit to Contest an Estate

In Queensland, you have 6 months from the date of death to contest an estate. It is therefore important to act promptly if you wish to challenge the distribution of an estate.

Time limit


Contesting an estate without a will in Queensland can be a complex process. It involves understanding your eligibility, filing legal paperwork, and potentially attending court hearings. Seeking legal advice is highly recommended to ensure that your interests are adequately represented.