A number of you people out there may know or have an inkling of what this is all about, but in other cases, it is probably something which will never enter their lives.
- What is called a “will contest” is a dispute by a person or people as to the legitimacy of a bequest, which in layman’s terms means the passing down of personal property through a will.
And this is where legal professionals can come in and be extremely useful with regards to will disputes, as their experience and full knowledge, can help to make things move much smoother and ensure no mistakes take place.
A Complex Business
In the majority of cases, a will contest is conducted by a close family member who challenges the interpreted decision of the departed to leave a particular piece of property to a person or peoples.
Indeed, there are many reasons why a will can be lawfully contested. For example:
- The contesting party might declare that the departed was not their right state of mind to execute the will when it was signed.
- Or, matters of fraud and coercion, also known as “undue influence.”
Being named is Important
To bring about a will contest, the contester must have a good reason for doing so, as in having something to gain if the legal result is granted.
In a will contest, people are normally in a better position, when they are named on the face of the will, or look to inherit something from the departed should the decision of the contest be granted.
- If the contester’s name is not mentioned at all, the will contest will be immediately dismissed.
- One of the most common assertions for a will contest is that the departed did not have their full mental capacity when executing the will.
So as to have that capacity, the deceased typically have had enough mental awareness to fully understand the consequences of their actions.
Other Examples of Contention
The contester may dispute a will that was executed right before the death of the deceased, on the grounds that due to the illness which resulted in their departure, the deceased was not properly in their right state of mind to properly execute the will.
- Also, if it was the case of the now deceased, being on heavy medication whilst the execution was taking place, just that by itself can be possible grounds for declaring the will nullified.
Another common contention for the declaration of a will being invalid is the assertion that the deceased was under undue influence when executing the will.
- Undue influence can be found should it be that the will was executed under pressure from a third party who had a standing leverage over the departed.
Those wishing to make a will contest may state that the party who is standing to benefit from the will, forged the signature of the departed.
Professional legal advice as a must in such cases!