When you write a will, you hope it captures your aspirations on how your estate should be distributed when you pass on. The chances are good that you spent several hours creating a will that reflects your goals and wishes. Unfortunately, there are times when your will can become the subject of dispute.
The death of a loved one is a difficult period for most people, and emotions can run high. The result can be fighting over inheritances and the content of the deceased’s final will. If you have concerns that your will might be contested upon your passing, there are a couple of steps that you can take to prevent this from happening. Here are some of them:
Engage an expert when creating your will
The first (and most important) thing you need to do is endeavor to get your will done right the first time. To this end, you need to engage an experienced attorney who will ensure that your will and other relevant documents are correctly drafted and executed pursuant to California legal requirements. The attorney will also ensure that there are witnesses who can testify that you were in sound mind at the time of signing the will. Both of those factors can help prevent will contests (or prevent them from succeeding).
Think twice before disinheriting a beneficiary
While you may have valid reasons for disinheriting an estranged spouse or child, doing so may result in significant problems for the executor or surviving heirs. As such, do keep in mind the likelihood that the disinherited party may challenge the validity of the will and take legal action — especially if they have nothing to lose.
All the careful planning and thoughts that went into creating your will could be for naught if someone successfully contests the will. Making sure that your will is contest-proof ensures that your wishes will be fulfilled when you are no longer around to make important decisions.