What people should know about family members contesting a will

On Behalf of | Dec 2, 2019 | Blog

Nevada residents who have been left out of a family member’s will and those making their will may be interested to learn whether a family member can contest a will if they are not included in it. The basic answer is yes. It is possible for a family member to contest the validity of a will.

While that may be true, these challenges do not happen often, and they are rarely successful. When wills are challenged, individuals in the family are usually not surprised; the individual contesting the validity of the will is typically someone who everyone expected to do so.

When it comes to estate planning, attorneys are almost always going to plan for the will to be challenged. Their job is to follow normal formalities and take needed precautions in order to make it unlikely that a challenge to a will succeeds. One estate planning technique that can defend against a will being challenged is the in terrorem clause. This provision makes it so that if a beneficiary challenges the validity of the will, they will walk away with nothing. It is a provision that can protect the will.

Most people want to be sure that their families are provided for and that their estate is handled in the way they lay out in their will. A person who feels worried that their will could be contested may wish to speak with an attorney. The attorney may discuss the situation with the client and take additional steps to protect the will. The attorney may be able to help the client draw up appropriate paperwork, include specific clauses that apply to estate planning and make sure that all paperwork is legally binding.