Will Dispute Litigation in La Grange

In La Grange, Texas, there is an observable surge in legal conflicts surrounding contentious wills. The passing of a family member in certain households brings to the surface long-standing family conflicts and suspicions. The feeling of betrayal, especially when suspicions arise that a relative has hidden or destroyed a will, or manipulated a loved one’s will before their passing, is both distressing and common. Allegations that a family member or close associate exercised undue influence on the deceased, endorsing a new will that favors an unexpected family member or the close associate, or modifying a will to unevenly allocate assets among family members, are not uncommon. Exclusion of someone from the will without apparent reason is another scenario often encountered, falling into categories like undue influence or outright fraud.

Challenging Coercion in Crafting a Will

If you hold strong suspicions and evidence of coercion or any of the aforementioned questionable or unlawful acts, and you are an interested party or would have been a beneficiary under a will, you can initiate a will dispute either when the court is initially approached to probate the will or estate or within two years after the will is admitted to probate. To take this step, you must enlist the services of a skilled attorney specializing in Contesting Lack of Mental Capacity to Make a Will to file a dispute in the existing probate action or file a motion to overturn the probate if the estate has already been probated. You and your lawyer will need to collect facts following evidentiary rules to present a compelling case. This involves using discovery, consulting with witnesses, relying on circumstantial evidence, and sometimes employing handwriting experts or other professionals. Preparing such a case is typically expensive due to the necessity for you and your attorney to piece together the puzzle to effectively demonstrate the wrongdoing.

The second primary challenge to a will revolves around a lack of testamentary capacity. The Texas Estates Code mandates that a person making a will be of sound mind at the time of executing the will. This is a factual matter to be determined by a judge or jury. The judge or jury will scrutinize documents, hear evidence from witnesses, and consult with medical experts to ascertain whether the deceased was of sound mind. Texas employs a five-part test to establish testamentary capacity. Essentially, the standard for testamentary capacity to execute a will is lower than that required to execute a contract. Additionally, capacity is assessed at the time of the will’s execution and is not solely based on the general mental condition of the deceased. Therefore, evidence of incapacity must be within a short time of the will’s execution to be persuasive.

Contact our Legal Team Specializing in Will Disputes

Our attorney at Stepp Law PLLC possesses a profound understanding of cases involving will disputes and the crucial elements needed to effectively challenge a will. We are not only highly skilled lawyers specializing in Contesting Lack of Mental Capacity but are also well-versed in the laws governing wills, probate, and disputes. If you are serious about challenging a will and believe you have relevant facts to do so, please contact us as soon as possible to explore the merits of your case.

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The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship.

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