The rift between the Duchess of Sussex and her father may be in the news, but away from the public eye, family estrangement is growing.

Until recently family rifts were not openly discussed, being far from the happy relationships perceived as the 'norm.' However increasing publicity involving members of the House of Windsor has brought the issue out of the shadows. Such rifts are often exacerbated or triggered after a death in the family.

Alison Regan says inheritance disputes are "massively on the rise", mostly due to the increase in "more complicated, blended families". "Sometimes even family relationships that were on an even keel can completely break down after a death," she says. "Disputes can get very acrimonious and aggressive when someone finds out money has been left to an unexpected source. When they're grieving, the situation is often very emotionally charged."

Why family estrangement is on the rise is available to read on The Daily Telegraph website via subscription. 

Alison is head of the trust, will and succession litigation team advising on all types of succession, probate and trust disputes, ranging from domicile, succession and administration disputes to breach of trust issues, rectification and construction applications and the removal of fiduciaries.