Your grandfather, mother or aunt may have recently passed away leaving behind an inheritance for you and your family – but it isn’t what you were expecting. You may have even been left out of the will entirely.
You may harbor suspicions that your loved one’s will should be challenged in court, but is that even possible? Here’s what you should ask yourself before contesting a will:
Could the will be invalid?
There are several reasons that a will may be considered invalid:
- There could have been undue influence or subterfuge involved. Your family member may have been tricked into signing something without realizing it was related to their will.
- A mental impairment could have obscured the testator’s true intentions. Elders may develop mental illnesses, like dementia, or even take prescription drugs that make it harder for them to understand the linguistics of legal documents.
- The will may be forged. The will may have a signature that resembles your family member’s handwriting but is someone else’s handwriting poorly copying your family member’s signature.
- The will may not meet statutory requirements. Your family member may have failed to make a valid will because they didn’t include the right language or follow the right steps when executing their documents.
A fraudulent will could prevent you from inheriting your family member’s estate after their death. Even the smallest discrepancy in a will may prove it is fraudulent.
Contesting a will on the belief that it is fraudulent requires swift action to be successful. If you believe you were promised an inheritance from your family member and find you were left with little to nothing then you may need to seek legal help. A will contest can help you get the inheritance you were promised.