A spokeswoman for the RSPCA said: "Each case is examined on its merits. Where it seems appropriate to seek a settlement without resorting to court action then of course we will do so. Over the last 17 years we have processed a total of over 30,000 bequests. Of this figure in only 30 instances have we been involved in court proceedings."When asked how it justified spending people's legacy donations on court costs, the charity said: "Of course we would rather spend monies generously left to us on direct animal welfare, but it is because their last wishes have been questioned that charities find themselves in having to defend their generosity. If we were to ignore their wishes it could be argued that no animals would ever benefit from any such legacy that comes to us.This is what happens when you leave money to the RSPCA: they come looking for your heirs.