Things To Consider Before Challenging A Will

Normally, contesting a will can be a complex prospect that takes a lot of time and money. It’s interesting to note that 90% of wills are approved without opposition. However, there are four main reasons why you can contest a will. Additionally, it may be completely or partially revoked if you are able to persuade the court of your case.


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A person’s will or testament is a legal document that stipulates the terms of how property will be inherited by their legal heirs, including the allocation of shares to the beneficiaries. Although it is not required, it is generally a good idea to register a will. A will that has been registered under the Indian Registration Act is persuasive evidence in court, but that does not exclude you from contesting the validity of the will. That a will can actually be contested on a number of different grounds. A will may be avoided entirely or in part if you are able to persuade the court. Common grounds for contesting a will include:

 

Testamentary capacity

Only adults who are at least 18 years old have the legal capacity to create a will. Except for those who are married or in the military, minors typically do not have the legal capacity to make a will.

If a person’s will is challenged in court, it will usually be on the grounds that it was drafted in questionable circumstances. Essentially, in order to contest a will due to lack of mental capacity. You must show that the testator was unable to comprehend the will’s implications at the time it was written.

“A will, unlike other legal papers, is a document that takes effect once the testator dies. As a result, the person depending on the will must demonstrate that it was properly executed. However, the party relying on the will must dispel the Court’s concerns if there are any questionable circumstances surrounding the execution of the will by offering credible and acceptable proof. Suspicious circumstances include, but are not limited to, questions regarding the validity of the testator’s signatures, the testator’s mental state, or provisions in the will that seem odd, unlikely, or unfair. Other clues in the will may demonstrate that the testator’s mind was not free when he or she wrote it.”

 

Fraud or improper influence

A will may also be contested if it was obtained through forgery, fraud, or coercion. Such cases frequently involve a manipulator who persuades the testator to leave behind all of the property or a larger portion of it for them. When disputing a will on such grounds, you must include sufficient proof in the claim to support your contention.

 

Lack of enough witnesses

The testator must sign the will in front of at least two witnesses who are at least 18 years old in order to confirm its legitimacy. People who have been named as witnesses are not allowed to be the property’s legal heirs, under the majority of States’ regulations. While handwritten wills are permitted in half of the States, they must be completely completed and signed by the testator. Some States even mandate that these wills be dated.

 

Family claims

A will may also be contested on the grounds that it did not appropriately care for a close relative. According to the Hindu Succession Act, the head of a family is required to make sufficient provisions for the sustenance of a number of close relatives who have been named in the Act.

 

How do you challenge a will?

In the court of law, you can contest at will in a number of different ways. These are:

  • The Law Reform (Testamentary Promises) Act, 1949
  • The Property (Relationships) Act, 1976
  • The Family Protection Act, 1955
  • By confronting the validity of the will

 

You can contest a will in the Family Court or High Court if you are a close relative. A spouse, wife, kid, grandchild, dependent step-child, and parent. If they were dependent on the deceased, have the right to petition the court under the Family Protection Act. If the Court determines that the dead did not properly fulfil his or her responsibility to assist the family members, the claim will be upheld. Under the Property Relationships Act, you can contest a will even if you are not a close family. However, you must offer convincing evidence of the promise made by the deceased. The legal spouse or de facto partner of the deceased may legitimately contest at will in accordance with the equal sharing provisions of the Property Relationships Act.

 

Brief how do you challenge a will

Coercion, fraud, undue influence, poor execution, lack of mental capacity, and other issues are frequently cited as justifications for opposing wills. As can be seen, the grounds for challenge are circumstantial in nature. And place a very high burden of proof on the party challenging to the will. Although it is simple for a person to initiate legal action in a court of law. It is frequently seen that people are unable to demonstrate such claims with substantial supporting evidence. For a will challenge to be successful in India, it is essential to have strong grounds for challenge and the supporting documentation to back up and demonstrate such allegations.”

 

To stop a will from being executed, it is wise to contest it as soon as possible in court. If the individual who is contesting the will is successful, it is deemed invalid.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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