Contested Wills in Des Plaines, Illinois

Find the right Contested Wills attorney in Des Plaines, IL

In Des Plaines, Illinois, there is a process through which a person can challenge the validity of a will. This is known as a "contested will" or "will contest."

Occasionally, testators leave out of their wills people who might normally expect to inherit a large portion of the testator's estate (spouses, for example). This might lead them to assume, correctly or not, that the will was a mistake.

If a lot of money, or some specifically valuable property, is at stake, the person who was left out might want to go to court and allege that the will was invalid. When left out of a will, a family member might naturally assume that some kind of mistake has been made, whether this is actually true or not.

Bringing legal action against anyone, let alone a family member, is not a decision that you should rush into. Contesting a will, particularly if another family member stands to lose out if you are successful in the contest, can permanently alter or even destroy family relationships. Evidently, this is something to consider.

When Can a Will be Contested in Des Plaines, Illinois?

There are various reasons that a Des Plaines, Illinois court might hold a will to be invalid.

For instance, if the will was obtained through duress (threat of some kind of harm), then it is invalid. Duress, however, is difficult to prove. If a named beneficiary was in some position of power or trust with the decedent, and is not someone who one would ordinarily expect to get a large gift in a will, that might raise significant initial suspicion of something improper happening. Of course, those facts alone are not nearly enough to prove duress.

Another fact that might invalidate a will is the mental incompetence of the testator. Wills must be a product of a person's volition. A will cannot be truly voluntary unless the testator knows what they're doing. Therefore, if the testator is mentally incompetent at the time he or she makes the will, the will cannot take effect. You should be aware, however, that this test applies at the time the will is made. So, if the testator is not mentally competent at the time of death, but was when the will was made, the will is valid.

So, you've succeeded in contesting the validity of a Des Plaines, Illinois will. What happens to the property that was going to be distributed according to its terms? Generally, when a will is declared void, the decedent's assets will be treated as if he or she had died without a will. This is known as "intestacy." Usually, this simply means that the assets will be passed on to their owner's closest living relative, typically a spouse, children, siblings, or parents. If absolutely no relatives can be found, the property is passed to the state. If there is a previous will, which was revoked by the invalid will, a court might revive the old will. If the new will was found to be completely invalid (rather than just parts of it), it follows, then, that the revocation of the old will is invalid as well. Therefore, the old will can be given effect.

Can a Des Plaines, Illinois Contested Will Attorney Help?

Contesting a will can be a complicated, emotional, expensive, and time-consuming process. There is really no way around this. However, a reputable Des Plaines, Illinois wills and estates attorney can minimize these problems, and make the process as painless as possible.

Talk to a Wills, Trusts and Estates Law Attorney now!

Life in Des Plaines

Des Plaines, Illinois is a community in Cook County, with a population of about 60,000 people. It is a suburb of the city of Chicago.

Des Plaines, Illinois enjoys a fairly high median household income, and a low cost of living, with the median income being about ,000 per year, and average home prices being around ,000.

Des Plaines, for a city its size, has a robust network of educational institutions, including a community college, and several specialized high school-level institutions, such as one focusing on fostering excellence in science and the arts, and private religious schools of various denominations.

Des Plaines, Illinois is a religiously-diverse city, and has several churches of different Christian denominations, as well as a Jewish temple, and an Islamic community center.

Des Plaines, Illinois is a good place to live for people who value diversity, especially those who work in Chicago, or the surrounding area. Its close proximity to city of Chicago, and its low cost of living, make Des Plaines a good option for young professionals who are ready to settle down.

Furthermore, there are plenty of Des Plaines, Illinois lawyers who are ready to help residents of the city and nearby communities with their legal issues. Des Plaines, Illinois lawyers can handle just about any legal problem one can throw at them.

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