You may be able to contest someone’s Will if they weren’t of sound mind or memory when they made or changed it.
Someone must have testamentary capacity in order to make or change a Will. This means that they must have the mental ability to understand what they’re doing and the impact that it will have on their estate and anyone who might inherit.
A Will is invalid if someone makes or changes it without testamentary capacity. Their estate will be administered according to their most recent valid Will instead. If they had no previous valid Will, their estate will be divided according to the rules of intestacy, which set out who can inherit from an estate when there’s no Will.
You may believe that a Will is invalid due to lack of testamentary capacity if:
The Will doesn’t provide for you or others whom you would have expected to benefit
The Will contradicts earlier promises or agreements
You’re concerned that the Will doesn’t reflect the deceased’s true wishes
You know the deceased was suffering from a medical condition when they made the Will and doubt whether they had testamentary capacity at that time.
Since many people only make or change their Will later in life, their capacity can be affected by conditions like memory loss, Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. However, people can lose capacity at any age due to mental illness or brain injury.
If you think a Will was made or altered without testamentary capacity, our lawyers could help you contest it.
As one of the largest Will, Trust & Estate Disputes teams in the country, we have a wealth of experience with these claims and understand how sensitive they can be. We’ll work with you to resolve the dispute as quickly and as amicably as possible.
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