Signs that Your Heirs Might Contest Your Estate Plan

Having an estate plan in place is one of the best ways to ensure your loved ones don’t fight over your estate after you’re gone. While it’s not always possible to tell when estate-related trouble is brewing in a family, there are a few signs that could indicate potential issues and even a will contest later. These signs aren’t always something a person must immediately address, but they can be an important clue regarding what should be included in an estate plan, so if you have questions or concerns about your own estate, it is important to contact Alan G. Orlowsky, who can advise you.

Family Tensions

It’s not uncommon for there to be tensions between certain family members, especially children. In most cases, these tensions resolve themselves relatively quickly. However, this is not always true and, in some cases, conflict while a parent is alive will only grow worse after that individual passes away. If you have children who are currently engaged in conflict with each other now, it may be safe to assume any future serious arguments will continue even after your death. To prevent your children from taking legal action at a later date claiming your estate plan isn’t valid or doesn’t represent your true wishes, you may want to consider discussing their concerns now and going over any weak points in the estate plan with an experienced contested estates lawyer.

Mental Health Issues

Those with beneficiaries and heirs who struggle with mental health issues should also keep in mind those individuals might be more likely to contest a will. Issues like clinical depression and substance abuse can wreak havoc on a person’s life, including when it comes to executing a relative’s estate plan. Of course, it’s not always possible to prevent a relative from contesting one’s will, but those who are concerned this might occur should consider setting up trusts to hand over assets. There are a variety of trusts that serve different purposes. If you believe this may be the best way to provide for a specific relative, please contact our legal team today.

Changes in Family Dynamics

Sudden changes in family dynamics could also have consequences on how a family functions, both before and after a loved one’s death. For instance, if a single parent meets someone new, those children could become concerned about the new partner’s intentions. This is an especially common scenario when a testator meets someone later in life. It’s possible a disgruntled heir or beneficiary could use a sudden change in family dynamics to try and prove a new will was the result of undue influence.

Contact a Northbrook Contested Estates Attorney for Help

Going over one’s estate plan with an attorney and any relatives is one of the best ways to avoid a will contest after a testator’s death. Please call 847-325-5559 today to speak with Alan G. Orlowsky about setting up a plan that clearly relays your wishes.

Updated as of July 2019
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