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Were you left out of a will?

On Behalf of | Oct 25, 2021 | Estate Planning |

Following the death of your loved one, it can be a shock to your system to find out that you were excluded from their will. The most important thing, in that situation, is keeping your cool and making informed decisions about what to do next. It may or may not be worth contesting the will.

Contesting a will is not an easy process, and before taking any course of action, you need to consider all the aspects of your case. It may help you see things more clearly amid all the chaos. Here are some steps to take:

Do a cost-benefit analysis

What is at stake?

Yes, you were left out of the will, but do the potential gains outweigh the legal costs of contesting it? If it does not make economic sense to fight over a tiny inheritance, you might want to reconsider contesting the will. In addition, it may be an emotionally draining process for other parties who find themselves involved. 

On the other hand, if you’re looking at a sizeable sum that you expected to inherit, then contesting the will may absolutely make sense.

Look at the case with a critical eye

For a desirable outcome, you need to prove coercion or fraud was involved in creating the will, or that there was diminished mental capacity on the part of the decedent. If they simply chose to exclude you on their own, you may have a difficult time winning your case.

While you have your rights to protect upon being left out of a will, you may want to consider other dispute resolution methods like mediation. However, if that is not possible given the circumstance of your case, it is essential that you know what the law says before making any further plans. It will put you in a better place and increase the likelihood of a successful result.