If a Will or Trust accurately reflects a person’s true intentions, leave it alone.
But, what if you suspect the Will or Trust reflects someone else’s intentions? You have to make a decision to fight. This decision is not always easy because of the emotions and finances involved.
Consider this example:
While you are grieving the loss of your mother, you discover that she changed her Will or Trust while she was suffering from dementia. You were once a beloved child, entitled to fifty percent. Now, you are told mom never wanted to give you anything while your sibling gets one hundred percent. On the one hand, you are told you are just being greedy if you file a contest. On the other hand, the new Will or Trust is not what your mom told you for years. To make matters worse, you have to decide whether to invest your hard earned money to vindicate your mom’s abuse or just let your sibling get everything. You want to fight, but what are your legal rights?
Some legal grounds to invalidating a will or trust include:
- Lack of capacity
- Undue influence
- Duress, or
- Disqualified caregiver
Capacity vs. Undue Influence
Importantly, the capacity standard for a will is lower than the capacity standard for a trust. This could be a significant factor in deciding whether to pursue a will or trust contest based on lack of capacity. Also, a person can have capacity and still be vulnerable to undue influence. Usually, the decedent’s medical records are key evidence to invalidating a will or trust because they can independently show a timeline of physical or mental decline when the will or trust was executed.
We Can Help
Through years of litigation experience, specifically devoted to Will and Trusts, we understand your dilemma and we want to help you make an informed decision. We will relentlessly fight to protect your rightful inheritance.
Please contact the Perryman Law Firm and let us help you weigh all the factors before making the ultimate decision to file your contest.
noun | \sək-'ses\ | [suc-cess]
A performance or achievement that is marked by success, as by the attainment of honors.