Contested Wills in Natick, Massachusetts

Find the right Contested Wills attorney in Natick, MA

In Natick, Massachusetts there are specific procedures authorizing certain people to challenge the validity of a will. This is identified as a "will contest" or "contested will."

Sometimes, testators leave out of their wills people who might naturally expect to inherit a substantial portion of the testator's estate (spouses and children, for example). This might lead them to assume, truthfully or not, that the will was some kind of mistake.

If there is a considerable amount of money or property at stake, a family member who was left out of the will might find it to be worth the time or money to contest it.

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

When Can a Will be Contested in Natick, Massachusetts?

A court in Natick, Massachusetts will not entertain a will contest unless there is a very good reason to do so. However, there are some allegations which, if proven, clearly invalidate a will.

For example, 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. Therefore, 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.

Because a testator must know what they are doing in order to write a valid will, the testator must be of sound mind at the time the will is made. Basically, if a person is unaware of what they're doing, and the consequences of their actions, they can't make a valid will. This can be due to mental illness, or intoxication. Of course, if it's a result of intoxication, the testator can simply sober up and then make a perfectly valid will.

So, you've succeeded in contesting the validity of a Natick, Massachusetts will. What happens to the property that was going to be distributed according to its terms? Usually, 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." Typically, this simply means that the assets will be passed on to their owner's closest living relative, normally 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. Consequently, the old will can be given effect.

Can a Natick, Massachusetts 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 knowledgeable lawyer in Natick, Massachusetts 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 Natick

Located only 15 miles from the state capital of Boston, Natik Massacheutts is a cute suburban town in the greater Boston area. In fact, miles 8-12 of the famous Boston Marathon go through the city. Natick is home to just under 33,000 residents. Natik, which means place of hills, is rather aptly named as the topography of the sixteen mile city is quite hilly. First settled in 1651 by a Puritan missionary, Natick has been growing ever since. There are many religious and secular points of interests in Natick, including: Temple Israel of Natick, BJ's Wholesale Club, and The Bacon Free Library. Natick also has a high number of public and private schools, making the city's education system second to none. Many Bostonians live in Natick and make the simple trek into the city. With the close proximity to Boston, which is home to Harvard Law School, among many others, it is not surprising how many great lawyers call Natick home. Ranging from property law to contract law to divorce issues, Natick lawyers have been trained in some of the best schools in the nation.

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