Invalid Wills And Trusts: Telltale Signs

People are not always happy with the terms of a will or trust. Perhaps they did not inherit as much as they thought they would, or some assets are going to a beneficiary of whom they do not approve. While these situations can be perfectly legal, sometimes they are not. At Mason & Helmers, our attorneys have extensive experience verifying the legality of estate documents, both in Minnesota and neighboring states. Here are some signs a will or trust may be invalid.

Undue Influence

This is a situation in which someone threatens or tricks the victim into changing the terms of a will or trust. While this is often a family member, sometimes a caretaker or new "friend" is responsible, exerting intense pressure on a vulnerable senior into taking action they otherwise would not have taken.

Lack Of Capacity

Wills and trusts are only valid if the person signing them has the capacity to understand what they are doing. If a person's mental faculties have been significantly compromised — whether by dementia, Alzheimer's, mental illness, or some other condition — then they can no longer handle their legal affairs. Wills and trusts signed by people in this condition can be challenged in court.

Other Signs

While undue influence and mental incapacity are the most common reasons for challenging a will or trust, other reasons exist as well. These include:

  • Forgery of signatures
  • Fraud, possibly involving false statements made to a decedent to induce them into changing the terms of their will or trust
  • Documents that were not properly signed and witnessed according to Minnesota law

Experienced Will And Trust Litigation

Improper wills and trusts are serious matters that deserve serious legal scrutiny. If you believe that a will or trust you stand to benefit from may be invalid, our lawyers can assess your situation. Please contact us through our website, or else call our office: 651-323-2548.

Our office serves Minneapolis, St. Paul and the surrounding areas.