Why a Will May be Contested, and What You Can Do About It

When a will is completed, the terms of the document may not be set in stone. It is possible for interested parties to contest a will, which challenges the contents of the document. Although a person can have multiple reasons for contesting a will, these arguments are generally brought forth based on the belief that the will is invalid.

If you feel that the will of someone you know is invalid, you can contest it to ensure the document accurately reflects the testator or deceased person’s final wishes. Conversely, if you are involved in the estate of a loved one and their will is being contested, there are ways you can respond to their claims.

Reasons a Will May be Contested

Will contests are typically based on the belief that what is included in the will does not accurately reflect the testator’s desires. Generally, these claims are based on a person’s assertion that the testator was not thinking clearly during the creation of their will or was made to include details that serve another person’s interests.

A will may be contested based on a person’s belief that:

  • The testator was not of sound mind when the will was created

  • The testator was coerced into including certain terms in their will

  • The will is otherwise fraudulent

  • A mistake was made

  • Proper processes were not followed when the will was created

How to Contest a Will

You may have a reason to believe that the will of a person you know is fraudulent or does not accurately reflect how they wanted their assets to be distributed upon their death. If this is the case, you can contest the will.

To contest a will, you must file a legal document in probate court that states the reasons why you oppose the document’s approval. You will then enter negotiations with the opposing party, during which you can present your evidence of the invalid will. Your case may enter trial, which will involve evidence presentation and arguments against the other side’s stance.

How to Handle a Contested Will Dispute

As a person who is involved in a loved one’s estate, you may find yourself on the other side of a will contest. You can oppose this type of action if you are confident that the will of your loved one is correct. You will need to provide evidence that the other party’s stance is wrong, and will present your case during negotiations, mediation, and trial.

The legal team of Busch, Reed, Jones & Leeper, P.C. can help you draft a will and handle any estate-related disputes. Contact us today to discuss the details of your case.

To schedule a consultation with our attorneys, send us a message or call (770) 629-0154.