Who can contest a will?

Lynard C. Hinojosa

When a loved one passes away, their will is one of the ways that they might pass assets down to individuals and other entities. There are instances in which the will might not contain what someone thought it was supposed to. This might lead to a will contest, but not just anyone can bring one of these complaints before the courts.

The limits on who can contest a will are in place to help prevent individuals who don’t have any valid interest in the outcome from taking this legal action. A will contest can hold up the closing of the estate and can be very costly to all parties involved, so it’s in the heirs’ best interests to ensure that only people with a valid interest can contest the terms of the will.

Anyone who was named in a previous version of the will as an heir, fiduciary or executor can contest a will that’s replaced the one they were named in. In order to do this, they must be able to prove that the current will is invalid.

People who aren’t named in the will but who would be an heir-at-law, meaning they’d be due part of the estate if there wasn’t a will, can challenge the will. There are sometimes cases in which the will can’t be contested. If there is a no-contest clause, you might not be able to do anything about the terms.

If you think that you need to challenge a will, contact a lawyer who’s familiar with these cases. These are often very complex cases, so being sure you have someone who can work on your behalf is beneficial.




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