The validity of a will may be called into question by making a formal objection to it. The larger an estate is, the larger the chance that an objection might be made. A person can’t just generally object to a will that’s being offered for admission into probate though. By retaining Springer & Lyle to draft and assist you in executing your will, you’re drastically reducing the chances that somebody will contest it.
Anybody interested person can object to a will, but their objection must have a specific basis that’s recognized by Texas law. Only a very small minority of contests are successful, but the contest might be used as leverage to reach a settlement that’s more favorable to the contestant than what they take or don’t take under a will.
The most common ground for contesting a will is testamentary capacity. The objector alleges that when the will was made and executed, the maker lacked the requisite mental ability to either be cognizant of the nature and extent of their property, know who their heirs were, or the fact that their will makes a final disposition of their property after their death. Notwithstanding the physical or mental capacities of the maker, a mere lucid interval might be sufficient to prove requisite capacity. Lack of capacity is a difficult objection to prove.
Undue influence is another ground for objection that we see in movies. The objector alleges that a new will was induced by a third party that satisfies the motives of the third party rather than the intent of the maker. Undue influence is also very difficult to prove. If the decedent left property to the attorney who drafted their will, a more sound basis for undue influence might resonate.
Actual technical flaws in the drafting or execution of a will might provide a sound basis for a will contest. Lack of sufficient witnesses or flaws in the actual execution of the will might result in a court holding a will to be invalid.
Always consult with an attorney from Springer & Lyle on probate law before drafting or executing a last will and testament. They’re knowledgeable and experienced attorneys for drafting and executing wills and other estate planning documents. A $25.00 will kit from the internet can result in hundreds of thousands of dollars of legal issues.