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What conditions make a will invalid?

| Feb 1, 2021 | Probate |

One of the reasons for probate in Tennessee is to verify the validity of estate planning documents such as a will. If you wish to contest a loved one’s will, it is important for you to know which conditions could make a will invalid.

Focusing on areas of concern may help strengthen your case so you can petition for the outcome your loved one would have wanted.

Conflicting information

If your family member lacked organizational skills, he or she may have put together multiple documents discussing end-of-life wishes. According to Policygenius, you can contest a will if you locate multiple wills. Your family member should properly destroy any old wills.

One way to eliminate confusion is to include a clause in the new will that revokes any document before it. The new will should also contain witness signatures to provide clarification. If you come across multiple wills for the same person and choose to contest them, the newest document will most likely take precedence.

Fraud and deception

Another reason you can contest a will is if you have proof of coercion and that your loved one lacked the adequate mental capacity to fairly participate in signing documents. While family members can assist in helping to organize an estate plan, they cannot force or trick your loved one into signing a will. Forgery and other fraudulent means for passing a will are also grounds for a contest.

Acting efficiently to contest a will can help you prevent the disappointment of finding out the limitations period expired. Once the limitations period expires, the outcome of a will falls to the courts.