We are working remotely and all of us continue to be available by telephone or email. In alignment with national, state and local initiatives as it relates to the coronavirus, we remain open for business and have changed the way we are working for the health and well-being of our employees, and you, our valued clients and colleagues. Read more

Mason & Helmers
We Welcome Your Call
  • Phone 651-323-2548
  • Toll Free 877-389-5533

How Minnesota residents can avoid probate disputes

The last thing that many Minnesota residents would want to see is their families locked in a probate dispute with each other after they die. Will conflicts and other disputes over inheritances take a huge toll in terms of time, money and emotional stress.

Although some probate disputes in Minnesota are simply unavoidable, Minnesotans can take a few simple steps that will reduce the possibility of a conflict arising in the first place. Moreover, should a conflict arise despite a person's best efforts to prevent it. These same steps can at least stop a family dispute from turning to ugly, protracted litigation.

The first, and perhaps the easiest, thing a person can do to prevent a probate fight after his or her death is to make sure that all documents are properly updated and current, while the person is still in good health, fully and obviously capable of making such important decisions. A person should update not only his or her will, but also documents, like beneficiary designations or designations on bank accounts and deeds, as a person may have built considerable savings in accounts, like IRAs and insurance policies. These types of accounts typically do not pass to the next generation under a will.

When making these updates, a Minnesota resident should also remember to communicate early, often and thoroughly with his or her loved ones so that they know the resident's wishes and why he or she has made these decisions. Good communication does a great deal to snuff out a probate battle before one even gets started and can also serve as useful evidence, should litigation prove inevitable.

Finally, Minnesotans making their wills should remember that "equal" and "fair" are not always one and the same. Each beneficiary under a will should be treated as an individual and should have his or her contributions individually weighed.

Although these tips may prove helpful in preventing or diminishing a family conflict, sometimes, probate litigation simply cannot be avoided. In these circumstances, an experienced Minnesota probate litigation attorney may prove to be of valuable assistance.

Source: The Fiscal Times, "4 wise ways to avoid a family feud among heirs," Sheryl Nance Nash, June 16, 2014

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

For Assistance with Estate Disputes & Other Matters, Contact Us

To learn more about the firm and how we can assist you,
contact Mason & Helmers in St. Paul, Minnesota. Call 651-323-2548 or 877-389-5533 (toll free) to set up an appointment.

*AV®, AV Preeminent®, Martindale-Hubbell Distinguished and Martindale-Hubbell Notable are certification marks used under license in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell® is the facilitator of a peer review
rating process. Ratings reflect the anonymous opinions of members of the bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Ratings™ fall into two categories — legal ability and general ethical standards.

Contact Our Attorneys

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

Email Us For A Response
Mason & Helmers

Mason & Helmers
332 Minnesota Street
Suite W-3070
St. Paul, MN 55101

Toll Free: 877-389-5533
Phone: 651-323-2548
St. Paul Law Office Map