A will contest lawyer can assist in challenging the terms of a deceased’s will. Any individual with “standing,” defined as an inheritor who stands to gain from contesting it, can make such legal challenges.
What if your grandparents were close to you but left their home to an individual who failed to provide adequate care as they approached death? Are there ways you can fight this decision?
Reasons for Contesting a Will
Wills can be challenged for various reasons, but within legal guidelines and on sufficient grounds. An individual cannot simply contest it because they feel left out or because their estate wasn’t worth as much as expected.
To contest a will, it is necessary to be an interested party – usually one who was designated in an earlier version of the will – as well as possess legal standing, which means you have a legal claim on some or all of the estate.
Before contesting a will, you must have valid grounds to do so, such as lack of mental capacity at the time it was signed or undue influence. Otherwise, this could strain family relations and involve lengthy and expensive legal processes that won’t produce much benefit in return. It is wise to seek professional advice prior to initiating this process.
Time Limits for Contesting a Will
As soon as a loved one dies, family members often disagree on who should receive what share of their estate. A comprehensive will can help address these disputes beforehand and avoid probate court proceedings being necessary to sort things out.
However, if you believe the will was flawed in some way, contesting it may be possible under state law. To do so, however, you must meet both standing and grounds requirements.
Legal proceedings surrounding will contests can be lengthy and complicated, which is why it is wise to consult an experienced will contests attorney Dallas as soon as possible.
Be mindful that there are time restrictions when challenging a will. Failing to file within this window could result in losing your right to inherit; usually, six months from when the petition for probate was granted is allowed – this period of time is known as the “statute of limitations”.
Legal Grounds for Contesting a Will
the process of determining whether a will is valid can be long and expensive, potentially harming family relationships in the process. Consulting with an experienced contested wills lawyer is vital for your case as there may be legal grounds to contest, such as lack of testamentary capacity, mistake, fraud, duress or undue influence which must all be addressed in your defence against being contesting wills.
To successfully challenge a will, one must possess “legal standing,” meaning that one stands to gain or lose something from its outcome. To show this is sufficient proof, one should show they were named in the will (or should have been), and would have received something of value had there been no will in place at the time of death of the testator (beneficiaries/heirs-at-law usually possess standing to challenge wills).
Evidence to support your allegations must also be presented, such as witness testimony or photographs from the signing ceremony. You could also offer proof of financial or medical issues which might have prevented a testator from creating their will in an effective manner.
Costs of Contesting a Will
When someone dies, their estate goes through probate to ascertain if they left a will and if one exists, it can be costly for all parties involved in its contestation – attorney fees and court costs being just two such costs associated with legal battles over wills. Therefore it is essential that before undertaking such an endeavor, it be considered carefully whether its time and expense justify their effort or otherwise.
To have standing to contest a will, one must meet specific requirements. These could include being either legally entitled to benefit from or inherit from the decedent’s estate; you also may have standing if there are grounds to suspect undue influence by others in making the will.
These are among the primary arguments against wills. There may also be other valid reasons, which you will need to discuss with an attorney.