A will is one of the last things that reflects the dying wish to distribute one’s property among his or her beloved and others. However, a will’s validity can be contested in court. If considering challenging a will, understanding the reasons and methods is crucial.
Common Grounds for Challenging a Will
- Lack of Testamentary Capacity: This is one of the most common reasons. It claims that the deceased was not mentally capable enough to comprehend the consequences of the will at the moment of its establishment.
- Undue Influence: If one suspects that the departed was unduly influenced or pressured to include specific terms in their will, then the document can be contested for undue influence.
- Improper Execution: Every jurisdiction has specific requirements for how a will must be executed. If these aren’t met, the will can be deemed invalid.
- Fraud or Forgery: If there’s evidence to suggest that the will is not genuine or was procured by fraud, it can be invalidated.
The Process of Challenging a Will
- Seek Legal Advice: Before taking any action, consult with a legal expert to understand the merits of your case.
- File a Caveat: This is a formal notice requesting the court not to grant probate of the will until your challenge is heard.
- Mediation: Many disputes are resolved through mediation, where both parties come to an agreement without the need for a court trial.
- Court Proceedings: If mediation fails, the matter will proceed to court. In this stage, both sides present their evidence, and the judge determines the legitimacy of the will.
- Outcome: If the challenge is successful, the will can be declared invalid. In such cases, a previous will might be reinstated, or if none exists, the estate may be distributed according to the laws of intestacy.
How The Williams Litigation Group Can Help
Challenging a will is intricate and demands skilled legal advice. The Williams Litigation Group offers seasoned lawyers to assist and safeguard your rights. If you believe a will doesn’t reflect the true intentions of a loved one, don’t navigate this challenging journey alone. Contact us today for a consultation.