Contesting a will is possible if it lacks legal standing under federal state laws. For a will to be considered valid, it must be in writing and signed by the testator in the presence of at least two witnesses who attest to its validity. Registration alone does not provide legal protection or prevent doubts about the will’s validity. Before challenging a will, one should carefully evaluate their reasons, assess the financial implications, weigh the costs and time involved, and consider other relevant factors. Consulting an experienced attorney at Holcomb Law, LLLC can provide valuable guidance for a successful challenge.
The following are some common reasons to contest a will:
A will can be contested if it lacks essential components mandated by federal law, such as being in writing and signed by the testator in the presence of two witnesses. If a will is amended, the date of the update should be recorded. The most recent will supersedes any prior versions. Failure to follow these requirements may render the will null and void.
Lack of Sufficient Knowledge or Consent:
The testator must have a clear understanding of the contents of the will. If it is proven in court that the testator lacked a thorough comprehension of the will’s contents at the time of signing, this may be considered a valid reason for challenging the will.
Insufficient Testamentary Capacity:
To have adequate testamentary capacity, one must be at least 18 years old. Minors cannot legally create a will.
If a person can demonstrate that the testator lacked testamentary capacity, the will can be challenged. This may also apply if the testator lacked the mental capacity to make sound decisions or was under undue influence at the time of creating the will. Such circumstances can provide grounds for contesting a will.
If it can be shown that the testator signed the will under the duress or undue influence of a third party, the will may be challenged.
Contesting a will can be a complex and time-consuming process, and an attorney can help you navigate the process efficiently and effectively, minimizing the potential financial and emotional costs. Moreover, before deciding to challenge a will, it is important to consult with an attorney to evaluate the potential legal and financial consequences, as well as the expected timeline for resolving the issue.