Contesting a will is a legal process through which a person challenges the validity of a will. This can happen when a person believes that the will does not accurately reflect the wishes of the deceased person or that the will was not executed in accordance with the legal requirements in New York. In such cases, the person may ask the court to declare the will invalid and distribute the estate in accordance with the laws of intestacy.
Here are some of the individuals who have the standing to contest a will in probate litigation.
Beneficiaries are individuals who are named in the will and would receive assets or property from the deceased person’s estate. If they believe that the will does not accurately reflect the deceased person’s wishes or if they are not satisfied with their share of the estate, they may contest the will.
Heirs at law
If a person dies without a will, the laws of intestacy dictate who will inherit the deceased person’s assets. These individuals, known as “heirs at law,” have the right to contest a will if they believe that it does not accurately reflect the laws of intestacy.
Executors are individuals who are appointed in the will to manage the deceased person’s estate. If they believe that the will is not valid, they may contest the will.
Close relatives, such as spouses, children and parents, may have standing to contest a will if they believe that they have not been treated fairly in the will or if they believe that the deceased person was unduly influenced or lacked the capacity to make a will.
Creditors are individuals or entities to whom the deceased person owed money. They may have standing to contest a will if they believe that the estate does not have enough assets to cover the deceased person’s debts.
Contesting a will
Contesting a will is a complex legal process that requires a clear understanding of the laws and procedures involved. If you believe that a will is invalid and you meet the criteria for having standing to contest the will, it is essential to understand the intricacies of the law and take the necessary actions to prove your position in court.