Will contests are a particular form of family dispute, increasing in frequency given the ongoing transfer of generational wealth. Protecting an interest in an inheritance may be critical to the financial security of you and your family. Whether you are an executor who is defending a will, or a person who wishes to contest a will, you should consult a lawyer experienced in both evaluating and litigating estate disputes.
There are numerous reasons to contest a will. Sometimes the issue isn’t whether the will is valid, but how to interpret its provisions. Either way, will contests and other forms of estate disputes march to their own rhythm and are subject to special procedural rules in court.
More than wills are subject to challenge. As part of my probate and estate litigation practice in Texas, I handle cases regarding challenged deeds, accounts, and life insurance designations. increasingly, such instruments transfer more than wills.
There are a variety of reasons to contest a will, trust, or deed in Texas:
- If the deceased was suspected of being mentally incompetent at the time the will, trust or deed was written
- If it is suspected that the deceased was unduly influenced by someone who would directly or indirectly benefit from the will, deed or beneficiary designation
- If two or more contradictory wills exist and investigation yields inconclusive results as to which was the final legal will
- If the will is suspected to be a forgery
- If the will or trust was improperly written, was unclear, incomplete, or contradictory and therefore was not enforceable
- If there are technical imperfections in the execution or witnessing of the document.
I handle will contests throughout Texas, but with a particular focus on North Central Texas. I handle such cases on either an hourly or contingency fee basis, depending on client wishes and resources.