By Marc Empey
What is a will or trust contest?
A will contest is a means of trying to correct a portion or even all of the last will and testament. A family member who feels they have been unfairly left out of the will or the conditions contained therein usually files the contest.
A trust contest is similar in that it is a formal objection by someone named in the trust or someone who would benefit from someone named in the trust. A party who considers the trust to not represent the actual intent of the creator is challenging the validity of the trust.
There are two groups of people who can file a contest. One is the direct beneficiary named in the document and the other are beneficiaries of the direct beneficiaries. Either group usually has ninety days to file the complaint. A Palm Springs Estate administration attorney can offer advise on the validity of the contest and how best to proceed.
How Palm Springs Trust and Estate Lawyers Help During a Will or Trust Contest
Palm Springs trust and estate lawyers will research the document and the contest to discover any legal reasons to go forward with the grievance. The most common reasons for filing against the will or trust include undue influence applied to the creator when drawing up the document and improper execution according to California law. Another reason would be the mental state of the creator or outright fraud was perpetrated on the deceased during creation.
Contesting a will or trust is serious business. Litigation against the document could lead to voiding the document completely or losing any benefit named if a no contest clause is included. Also the creator is legally allowed to dispose the benefits as he so chooses whether the terms seem “fair” or not. For that reason consulting our Palm Springs estate planning attorney before the need arises will help protect your rights.