Will contests are messy and should never be started based on hurt feelings alone.
The first question you really need to answer is why are you contesting the will?
Is it because of unmet expectations?
Were you verbally told something different from the ultimate result?
Did you assume you would get more because you deserved it?
Maybe you supported and helped the relative through an illness before he or she passed.
Why would the estate go elsewhere?
Why would you get less than promised?
Questions like these may indeed deserve answers.
However, they are not effective in a will contest, according to the hometownlife.com article titled “Contesting a will usually a no-win proposition.”
They care about the letter of the law.
So what might be good reasons for contesting a will?
Sometimes individuals put pressure on the testator (the person signing the will) to make them beneficiaries under the will.
If there is evidence of force, coercion or manipulation, you may have a case.
Medication has its benefits.
But it often has side effects.
These side effects could have negative effects when it comes to making decisions.
Depending on the drugs and the circumstances, a will could be overturned.
Mental capacity diminishes as you get older.
That is just a fact of life.
For some people, this happens more quickly or more dramatically than for others.
If your loved one did not have the proper state of mind to make or change his or her will, the courts may overturn the will.
Is contesting a will worth it?
To be sure, it is an expensive and emotional process.
Family ties may be irreparably broken.
Still, sometimes a will contest is the right thing to do.
A good way to know?
Ask an experienced estate planning attorney for advice.
What if you have a case?
Get an "estate litigation attorney" who understands estate planning, can go to court, present your case and help get a little justice for your family.
Remember: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” When making your financial, tax and estate plans, do not go it alone. Be sure to engage competent professional counsel.
For more information about estate planning in Overland Park, KS (and throughout the rest of Kansas and Missouri), visit our estate planning website and be sure to subscribe to our complimentary estate planning e-newsletter while you are there.
Reference: hometownlife.com (January 15, 2017) “Contesting a will usually a no-win proposition”