If you are disappointed with a will and feel as if you have the grounds to challenge it, then you may be able to contest the will through legal means. Although contesting wills do not have a high success rate, there have been many cases whereby people have been successful in contesting the will and getting reimbursed from the estate in question.
Who can Challenge a Will?
Firstly, there are particular rules and regulations concerning who can and cannot contest a will. You can contest a will if you are a blood relative of the deceased, if you are their child (adopted or blood) or spouse. In some places, even if you attempt to disinherit your spouse or if you do not make a will, it is likely that they will still be able to make a claim on your estate, for example. Other people that can challenge a will include someone to whom the estate is in debt to, a beneficiary of an earlier will and those who have been promised assets by the deceased in the past, through either verbal or written communication.
Will you Need a Lawyer?
Although the costs of legal services can differ, these are important if you are going to be successful in your claim. If you are thinking of contesting a will, you should speak to a lawyer to receive impartial advice and to acknowledge whether your claims are strong enough to succeed. At www.the-inheritance-experts.co.uk, they provide you with a strong team of lawyers that can advise you on your claim and help you to settle any disputes quickly and efficiently, giving you the guidance you need to reduce the stress of what can be an incredibly overwhelming time.
On What Grounds can you Contest a Will?
- Will Validity: You can challenge a will if you believe that there is a reason that the will may not be valid, such as insufficient witnesses, that the deceased did not know or understand the contents of the will, for example.
- Financial Support: You can also challenge a will if you have been barred from financial aid from the deceased. To do this, you must prove that you relied on the deceased for financial support, or that you expected to receive an amount of financial aid from them. You can also contest a will if you believe that the deceased has made inadequate financial provision for you, for instance, if you are their child and have been disinherited.
- Undue Influence: If the deceased’s mind has been turned against another beneficiary to the extent that this is reflected in their will, or if another beneficiary has forced them to create a will that benefits them more than others, this is called undue interest and can be contested against. This can normally be proved by sudden changes to the will.
- Mental Capacity: If you believe the deceased did not have the mental capability to understand the will or to know what they were signing to, then you can plea inadequate mental capacity.
- Forgery: If you are suspicious that the signatures have been forged or that the document is false, you can contest the will as well.