Hartford probate attorneys can provide you with assistance after someone you love has passed away. In most circumstances, a death will trigger the probate process. The probate process is the process by which assets can transfer from one owner to another owner. The deceased person (decedent), will leave property behind and the affairs of the decedent’s estate will need to be settled. If the decedent created a last will and testament, that will determine who inherits.
If there is no enforceable, valid will, then intestacy law will determine who receives money and property left behind. Creditors will also be given the chance to make a claim on the estate, and the executor of an estate will be responsible for doing things like facilitating the payment of estate tax and facilitating the transfer of assets by changing titles and deeds.
The probate process can take a long time, even under the best of circumstances. Sometimes, however, there are problems with the probate process. In particular, one big issue can arise when the executor of an estate presents a will to be probated and one or more parties believe that the will is not a valid and accurate reflection of the wishes of the deceased.
The probate process provides an opportunity for a will to be contested, and if you believe that the will being presented for probate is not a valid one, you should reach out to Hartford probate attorneys for help contesting the will as soon as possible. Nirenstein, Horowitz & Associates has extensive experience with will contests and we can help you to make a compelling argument for why a will should not be probated because of serious problems with the document.
While there are many reasons to contest a will, five key situations where you may be successful in challenging a will so it is not enforced include the following circumstances.
When the Decedent was of Unsound Mind When He Created the Will
A will is only valid if its creator was sane and made a conscious and willing choice to create the will. If a person has lost his mental capacity due to physical or mental illness, then any will he creates when he is of unsound mind is not going to be a valid and enforceable one.
When the Decedent Created the Will Under Duress
If someone was forced into making a will, it is not a willing reflection of his wishes and thus should be successfully contested. Often, this problem arises when a caregiver has a lot of control over a person and essentially makes that person change his will.
When Fraud Was Used to Convince the Decedent to Create the Will
If someone is tricked into making or updating a will, he again does not make the will of his own volition and the will should not be considered valid. You would need to prove that fraud induced the decedent to create the will in order for it not to be probated.
When the Will Was not Made By the Decedent
Wills usually must be formally signed with witnesses. However, there are certain kinds of wills – like holographic or handwritten wills – that could be presented to the court to be probated. Sometimes, a fraudulent will is submitted that was not actually created by the decedent but that someone is claiming is an accurate reflection of the deceased person’s wishes. When this occurs, you need to fight to ensure that the fraudulent document is not probated and used to determine who inherits.
When the Will is Not the Most Updated One
When a new will is made, the old one should be repudiated. Sometimes, however, there is confusion over which version of a will is the most updated or there is confusion over whether an update was meant to completely replace an old will or just to update it. If you don’t believe the will being submitted to be probated is the most accurate and up-to-date will, you can present evidence to the court that a different will should be enforced instead.
Getting Help from Hartford Probate Attorneys
Hartford probate attorneys at Nirenstein, Horowitz & Associates can provide invaluable help to you if you wish to contest a will. We can also provide representation to heirs or beneficiaries, and to the executor of an estate, who wish to argue that a last will and testament being presented for probate is actually a valid one.
To find out more about the ways in which our legal team can help you, join us for a free seminar. You can also give us a call at 860-548-1000 or contact us online to get personalized one-on-one help with any issues that arise after your loved one has passed away. Call now to get a knowledgeable advocate on your side to help you protect your right to inherit.