Contested Wills in Bel Air, Maryland

Find the right Contested Wills attorney in Bel Air, MD

In Bel Air, Maryland 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.

You should remember that a will contest frequently results in adversarial legal proceedings, which can be very contentious. Considering the likelihood that other members of your family might be on the other side, it's clear that this can really damage a person's relationship with his or her family.

When Can a Will be Contested in Bel Air, Maryland?

A court in Bel Air, Maryland 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.

One big reason to invalidate a will is the fact that the will was made under duress. "Duress" simply means forcing somebody to do something they don't want to, using some kind of threat. Typically, the threat involves some type of physical harm. The most obvious example would involve putting a gun to somebody's head and telling them to write a will containing the terms desired by the gunman. Such a will, assuming the underlying facts can be proven in court, will never be valid. Of course, the validity of a will rarely becomes an issue until the testator has died, which may be years after the will was drafted. This means that proving the circumstances under which the will was made can often be very difficult. However, there are certain facts, such as the devise being to an "unnatural" beneficiary (somebody the testator didn't know very well, for instance), and the beneficiary being in a position of power over the decedent, are enough to at least create a suspicion that something is wrong.

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.

There are many other facts that might make a will invalid, and thus serve as grounds to contest a will. If a will is successfully contested in Bel Air, Maryland, and held to be invalid, this typically results in the property being distributed as if the decedent had died intestate (without a will). This means that it will usually go to the decedent's closest living relative.

Can a Bel Air, Maryland Contested Will Attorney Help?

Contesting a will is often challenging, and never fun. However, the whole process can be made more bearable if you have the help of a knowledgeable Bel Air, Maryland attorney, and the process will probably be much more manageable.

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

Life in Bel Air

Bel Air is located in Harford County, Maryland. When Bel Air comes to mind, people usually think of the popular television sitcom "The Fresh Prince of Bel Air," or Bel Air in Los Angeles, California. However, this quaint town in Maryland has a population of a little over 11,000 people. It is home to a very diverse population of people with a median household income of around ,135.

The hospital and school district system are the primary employers. Bel Air is also home to some practicing attorneys who aid residents with their legal needs, while providing excellent and personalized legal servies.

Although a small town, Bel Air has been the home of some very famous people. Famous residents include John Archer, John Wilkes Booth, Augustus Bradford, Kimmie, Meissner, Melvin Mora, Herman Stump, Jay Witasick, and Pat Healey.

All in all, Bel Air is a wonderful place to live that offers residents small town charm along with a unified community spirit.

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