I specialise in inheritance disputes that arise following death and in lifetime, including:
- Claims under the Inheritance (Provision for Family & Dependants) Act 1975
- Will validity challenges including claims involving testamentary capacity, undue influence, want of knowledge and approval, fraudulent calumny and forgery
- Executor/trustee disputes including claims for removal
- Proprietary estoppel cases
- Financial abuse and attorney disputes (lifetime and on death)
- Disputes surrounding the ownership of assets (i.e. Trusts of Land and Appointment of Trustees Act 1996 and constructive trust cases).
I have acted for clients who are claimants and defendants in these types of cases and therefore have experience of both angles.
What inspired you to get into law?
I had a family friend who was a solicitor and after doing work experience with her at a young age, I decided it was an area I was interested in and wanted to pursue. After studying law at A-level and degree level, my interest in the law developed and I quickly realised that it would be a rewarding career in terms of the help and assistance you are able to provide to clients.
What is the most rewarding aspect of your role?
It is achieving a result that the client is happy with which will then allow them to get on with their lives and hopefully put the dispute behind them. These claims often involve a great deal of emotions and being there for a client during these difficult times and guiding them through to a resolution is extremely rewarding.
What do you like about working at Irwin Mitchell?
I have worked at Irwin Mitchell since 2016 and it’s a fantastic company to work for. I enjoy working in a large national team and having regular catch-ups with my colleagues all over the country. The work that comes into the team is also of high quality and is extremely varied which means that no day is ever the same.
What do you do away from the office?
Outside of work, I like to play netball. I am also an avid musical fan and I like taking regular trips to London and other cities to go to the theatre.
"I approached Jodie Buck and Paula Myers in the Wills, Trusts and Estate Disputes department of Irwin Mitchell after my partner unexpectedly died of COVID last year. Due to the complexities of his estate I needed independent advice about my position... However, Jodie and Paula were with me all the way to provide sound advice and support and always had my back even when I didn't realise I needed it. Thank you so much you guys. I will most definitely make a recommendation to your team." - 5* Trustpilot review
"Throughout our lengthy and extremely stressful legal proceedings, James Laycock and Jodie Buck from 'Will, Trust & Estate Disputes' in Leeds provided a high level of legal knowledge and skill. They have consistently given honest and professional advice whilst always keeping us up to date with current developments and next steps. Most of all they were supportive and showed real empathy at a time when myself and my family were grieving whilst having to deal with a contentious legal situation. I would like to sincerely thank James and Jodie for all their hard work and commitment to resolve the legal case with the best conclusion for myself and my family." - 5* Trustpilot reviews
'Paula is also assisted by her incomparable Trainee Solicitor, Jodie Buck. Jodie has an incredible presence and a fantastic knowledge of the law. She is calm and it is easy to see how she will flourish to be a great solicitor under Paula’s guidance. Thank you again for all that you have achieved for me and my family!' - Ms A, client
'Going through the process of a legal claim after the loss of a loved one with whom I had shared many years of my life was a distressing experience but I am grateful for the understanding shown to me by Paula Myers and Jodie Buck of Irwin Mitchell. They kept me fully informed of progress in the matter and brought it to a satisfactory conclusion.' - Ms D, client
'Sadly I found myself in the position of challenging my Mothers Will. Richard Smaller could not have been more professional, thorough, helpful and considerate. He and Jodie Buck helped me to reach a settlement at Mediation (by video conference on the first day of the Coronavirus lockdown) and I am most grateful. I would fully recommend Irwin Mitchell if you have any Will issues.' - Ms G, client
Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 update - Family Law, November 2018
Cat unearths forgotten will, settles £2m farming land dispute