A Conroe Probate Attorney Discusses Claims of Undue Influence
It is not uncommon when a decedent passes for heirs to have differences of opinion about the appropriateness of the will's terms. In more serious cases, though, as a Conroe probate attorney can tell you, one or more heirs may call into question whether the will is valid because of undue influence by another individual or party.
A Conroe Probate Lawyer on Establishing Undue Influence
Assuming that the decedent was of sound mind upon passing, a claim of undue influence is not all that easy to prove. The claimant must show influence that extends beyond mere suggestion. As a Conroe probate attorney can tell you, the contester must prove that the decedent was influenced to the extent that the changes to the will were not in keeping with his wishes.
In order to prove such a contention it must be shown that the decedent was pressured, or even forced, to make the changes in question. The logical dilemma for the challenger is that the decedent is not alive to offer evidence.
A Conroe Probate Attorney Explains When Such Challenges Typically Are Made
The individual claiming undue influence may be one who is not a natural heir, but often a sibling or other close relative who stands to receive substantially less than the others brings the claim. A Conroe probate lawyer will tell you that in many cases a former will in which the claimant was to be left with a larger proportion of the estate has been superseded by another.
Should a probate court deem that a claim of undue influence has been proven, several possible actions may be taken:
- The court can rule that the will is invalid
- The court can decide that an earlier will is valid
- The court can rule that the decedent was intestate at death; in other words, he died without a valid will.
For Assistance from a Conroe Probate Lawyer
If you need assistance with an undue influence claim, or have other concerns, a Conroe probate lawyer can help. Peterson Law Group will provide you with quality representation. Call us today at 936-337-4681.