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How wills may end up going through probate litigation

On Behalf of | Dec 31, 2020 | Firm News

People in Kentucky do not live forever and at some point in time everyone will pass away. This is an unfortunate fact of life and when people do pass away, they cannot bring their possessions with them. Those will stay on earth and family members will end up with the possessions unless people direct it to go to specific people through a will. This is a very important document for people to have executed and needs to be done correctly.

There are various requirements for wills to be valid. They also must go through a process known as probate. During this court process the courts ensure that the wills and wishes of the deceased are being fulfilled correctly. This can be a complicated process, but if there are no challenges to the will, it can be completed relatively easily. However, people can challenge wills through the probate process as well and if there are challenges the process can be much more complicated.

Common challenges to wills

There are many different reasons that people may choose to challenge a will, but some of the more common challenges are:

  • Testamentary capacity – these challenges regard whether the person making the will had the mental capacity to understand what they were doing when they executed the will.
  • Fraud of undue influence – this challenges whether another individual fraudulently influenced the person to provide certain benefits to them in the will or forged signatures.
  • Another will – Sometimes there may be multiple wills drafted and people may challenge on the grounds that another will trumps the one going through probate.
  • Form of the will – Challenges can include that there were not the proper witnesses, did not have the proper provisions, they did not reside in the state where the will was formed and others

Wills are very important parts of people’s estate plan in Kentucky and can be used to direct people’s possessions to the loved ones they want to have them. When they are not drafted properly though they can be open to valid challenges which can create a messy situation. Experienced attorneys understand how to draft wills and may be able to guide one through the process.