Dispute Over a Deceased Family Members Will? Get the Defense You Need to Protect your Family

Will Contests in Orange County

Estate Litigation Services

Contesting a will gives a legal party the opportunity to question the validity of a will with the intent of altering or halting it. A time-consuming and complicated process, will contests can potentially be avoided altogether if a professional writes the will in the first place, eliminating any cracks or loopholes contenders might try to exploit. If you need to have a will drafted, we recommend you have an Orange County estate planning attorney from our firm assist you. We provide skilled estate litigation and probate litigation services to family members embroiled in a dispute over the deceased's will and/or trust.

Reasons to Contest a Will

A will may be contested for many reasons, each one typically requiring evidence that may be difficult to prove valid.

If you need to contest a will, consider the following grounds:

  • Failure to sign in accordance with state laws - If the signing of a will is not done with the proper witnesses, often varying state to state, it may be contested in court.
  • Testator did not comprehend the value of the will - If the person signing the will is unable to understand the estate, or the reasons why it should be distributed in such a way, due to a number of disabilities, the will may be subject to contention.
  • Undue influence upon the testator - If extreme intimidation, pressure, or coercion was placed upon the testator with intent to cause duress, the will may face contention.
  • Fraudulent procurement of the will - If the testator was unaware of signing the will, whether due to dishonesty or mistaken documentation, the will may be contested.

Ways to Avoid a Will Contest

Will contests can cause rifts between family members and potentially lead to costly litigation. Parties may end up fighting for years and stalling the estate administration process.

However, there are certain steps that people can take to help avoid a will contest.

  • Draft a proper and legally binding will with the help of an attorney
  • Certify your mental competency by getting certification from a doctor
  • Videotape you signing the will to avoid discussions of potential fraud
  • Include letters explaining your decisions to beneficiaries to provide clarity

Get the Help You Need: Call for a Free Consultation

Very few will contests are upheld in court. This may be due to the fact that it is the responsibility of the contesters to provide evidence that would disclaim the will. If you need help contesting a will, or if you find yourself needing to defend a will, your best chances are to contact a professional with years of practice in the field. Our team at P. Arnsen Blakely is willing and waiting to help.

Please contact us today for a free consultation.
We look forward to helping you.

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