When a loved one dies, it can be hard enough for the family to get along and settle the estate even when there are no issues among the family members. When there is a will from the family member who has died and some of the members of the family do not agree with what is in the will, then this time is even more difficult. If you have been cut out of a will, are not getting your fair share of an estate, or think that the will is not the true wishes of your loved one, you may want to look into how to successfully contest the will so that you can have it changed. This is a very difficult thing to do and most people do not have the education or experience necessary to successfully contest a will, which is why hiring an expert lawyer is a good idea.
Do You Have Standing to Contest?
Your first step is to determine if you even have standing to contest a will as not all people have the ability to do so. To contest the will, you have to be involved enough that you will be personally and directly involved by the outcome and what is determined by the court. If you do not having standing as either a beneficiary who was named in the will or an intestate heir, then you will not be able to proceed.
Are You Timely Enough to File?
The next step in contesting a will is a timely filing, which is when contesting a will lawyers will really come in handy. If you do not meet the timeline for filing, then you will not be able to contest the will at all. There is a limited amount of time that is given to file after a person dies so it’s imperative that you act quickly. Working with a lawyer will ensure that you meet this timeline and that the paperwork is all filed correctly so you don’t have to start over, wasting time.
If you are unhappy with a loved one’s will, then it is important to remember that while you can contest it, you will have to do so quickly and only if you have grounds to do so. Hiring a lawyer will help to clear up any confusion you have during this process and allow you to move forward quickly. In addition, a great lawyer will help you determine if you even have enough evidence to contest a will. This can vary from case to case but you will need to show that the will was not signed correctly, the decedent was not mentally capable to sign or was forced to sign, or that the will is fraudulent.