Contest a Will
In order to contest a will, the services of an attorney are almost universally advised. There are various legal grounds on which to challenge the validity of a will, or to question the instructions of the deceased. You do not need to know in advance that you have a valid claim. You are not expected to be an attorney. You may simply sense a problem, and you want advice. You will find us to be down-to-earth, friendly and knowledgeable. If we are the law firm you select, you will find us to be exceptionally hard working on your behalf.
To understand how to contest a will, and for our assessment of your legal options
Call 408-971-4359 to arrange a consultation
If you are planning to contest a will, we will need to determine if you have what is called “standing”, which will be determined by the court. This could mean that you are designated an heir; or that you believe you should have been named in the will. The legalities of standing are complex, and our expert probate litigators will be able to assess your circumstances and determine if you are eligible to challenge a last will and testament.
In addition to standing, you can only contest a will on valid reasoning. There are many reasons behind challenges of a deceased’s wishes.
Some of the most common are:
Undue influence: This means that someone was exerting pressure or even threatening the person who was writing their will. This might have had an impact on who was named in the will, or named executor.
State of mind: Were they of “sound mind” while the will was written or influenced by age, drugs or alcohol?
Fraud: Terms of a will could have been added illegally, taken out, forged or altered.
The competence of the executor: It may be necessary to contest a will because the person named to execute it may be seen as unable to do it or unprepared for the tasks.
There may be another will: It happens that a competing document surfaces. The will on record may not be the latest intended by the deceased.
The decision to contest a will may result in a lawsuit that goes to court. It could be mediated (our expert attorneys are available and experienced at mediation as well). There may be a settlement along the way before the issue gets to court. The skilled attorneys in our law firm will make certain that you have had the laws and how they impact your situation clearly explained to you. Call today to arrange a discussion.
Most people find that the weeks and months following a decision to contest a will are full of emotion and stress. Families may be angry at other family members. Our probate litigators are noted for their calm, forceful application of the law as well as their genuine humanity toward our clients and all sides in a dispute. We believe in rigorous honesty. We have a reputation for integrity. Our goal is to use hard work and knowledge of the law to bring about a fair result, whether it is in court, through mediation, or in a settlement.
Do you want to contest a will? Call 408-971-4359 to schedule a consultation
with a skilled, experienced attorney in our law firm
Call our law firm if you wish to contest a will in San Jose, Palo Alto, San Francisco, Oakland, Fremont, Santa Cruz, Monterey, and Milpitas.