How to defend a contested will as an executor

On Behalf of | Mar 28, 2023 | Estate And Trust Litigation

When you take a will to probate, you expect everything to go smoothly. However, this is not always the case. An interested party can contest it on different grounds. And in some cases, you may be the primary party of the contest. 

If a will is contested, as an executor, you need to defend it. Here is what you should do.

Get more information

Even though you may be entitled to defend a will contest, you may not know the grounds for the contest. Thus, you may need to do your homework. 

For instance, if an interested party states the testator made last-minute changes to the will, yet you were not informed, you will need to go through the will to understand their claim. Accordingly, you will find out who was present when the alleged changes were made to get statements from them and so on.

With adequate information, you can file enough evidence to prove the accuracy and validity of the will.

Stay calm

The testator used their own criteria to distribute wealth, and some beneficiaries may not be happy with the will. As a result, they may contest it or even challenge your appointment as the executor. Regardless of how upset they may be, you should stay calm. Your loved one appointed you because you possess qualities to competently act as an executor. Thus, stay calm and gather needed evidence without distractions.

Avoid deals outside the court

A party that contests a will may contact you to solve the issue outside the court. While this seems like time-saving, it’s unlawful and can lead to disputes from other beneficiaries. Thus avoid such deals.

If you are required to defend the will of your loved one, you need the right knowledge and experience to make informed decisions.