Contested Wills in Hoffman Estates, Illinois

Find the right Contested Wills attorney in Hoffman Estates, IL

In Hoffman Estates, Illinois there are particular procedures permitting certain people to challenge the validity of a will. This is recognized as a "will contest" or "contested will."

Occasionally, when a person who expected to be included in a will is left out, their natural assumption is that there was some mistake, or that the will was made through improper means, such as duress or fraud, or that the will is an outright forgery.

If a massive amount of money is involved, someone who was left out of a will, or not given what they were expecting, might believe that contesting the will is worth the time, money, and energy that doing so would require.

Like any legal matter, however, this should not be taken lightly. Will contests can foster conflict and strife within families who are already mourning a loved one. This can cause grave and irreversible damage to family relationships.

When Can a Will be Contested in Hoffman Estates, Illinois?

A court in Hoffman Estates, Illinois will not entertain a will contest unless there is a very good reason to do so. But, there are some allegations which, if shown, clearly invalidate a will.

For instance, a will which was not made under the testator's own volition and free will is not valid. This means that the testator must be acting voluntarily throughout the entire process of making his will. Thus, a will made under duress (force, or threat of force) will not be given effect. In order to show duress, you generally need to first prove that the person named in the will was in a position of trust and power over the decedent, and that they are an "unnatural beneficiary" (someone who you would not normally expect to receive a gift under a will, usually because they are not related to, or close friends with, the testator). These facts, taken alone, are never enough to definitively prove that duress occurred. They are, however, usually enough to suggest that something strange is going on, and warrant further investigation.

A will can also be denied because the decedent was not mentally competent to draft it at the it was made. A court will look at the person's mental capacity at the time the will was made, so even if the testator is now perfectly sane, if he or she was incapacitated for whatever reason (by way of intoxication, for instance) at the time the will was made, the will can still be invalidated.

If a Hoffman Estates, Illinois will is successfully challenged and thus invalidated, there has to be some system for orderly distribution of the decedent's property. Normally, if a will is held invalid, all of the property will be treated as if the decedent had never written or will. This means that it goes to the decedent's closest living relative, or, if there are not relatives who can be located, the state.

Can a Hoffman Estates, Illinois Contested Will Attorney Help?

Because this can involve complicated legal issues, and be very emotionally draining, this is not something you want to go at alone. A seasoned lawyer in Hoffman Estates, Illinois can be very helpful in making sure that this process goes as smoothly as possible.

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

Life in Hoffman Estates

Hoffman Estates is situated to the northwest of downtown Chicago. This Cook County city is an affluent suburb that is home to 54,000 Illinois residents. Because it's an affluent city with many attractions, many lawyers call it home. Hoffman Estates lawyers are familiar with local courts and procedures, consulting on a wide range of cases. Major industry in Hoffman Estates include the headquarters of the Sears Holdings Corporation, the ATT headquarters for the Midwest, American headquarters for Japanese machine tool manufacturer Mori Seiki, and a number of sports teams.

The Sears Centre in Hoffman Estates plays host to major indoor soccer team Chicago Storm, the Chicago Slaughter indoor football team, and Chicago Bliss lingerie football team. More recently, Heartland International Tattoo relocated to the Sears Centre. It's one of the largest music and dance festivals in the Midwest. Hoffman Estates gained prominence in the mid-1960s and early 1970s when the Centex corporation began mass producing homes on adjacent lots. The location was desirable because the Northwest Tollway opened providing direct access to Chicago's downtown businesses. Soon afterward the Woodfield Mall opened and a master planned community began construction attracting a number of corporate headquarters and tourist attractions. 

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