Many of this blog’s prior posts, when discussing noteworthy probate battles, report on various evidentiary disputes often brought to the forefront by the conflicting testimony of witnesses. Often times, a person faced with a will contest or other probate litigation will indeed need to rely on a thorough investigation and solid presentation skills in court.
However, as a recent post on this blog confirms, sometimes probate disputes in Minnesota are not so much questions of what a person’s intent was or whether he or she was subject to fraud or undue influence. Instead, a will or trust document that lacks sufficient clarity could evolve into a dispute over what a particular word or phrase in the document means. Sometimes, the meaning of one world can make a world of a difference for the heirs.
Interpreting a document requires a slightly different set of skills on the part of a probate litigation attorney. While evidence and an investigation may still be required, the key to winning a case over interpretation requires that the attorney be able to read and interpret a document well and then argue his or her well-supported interpretation before the court. This requires a thorough knowledge of the law, particularly those laws and cases that control how a Minnesota court will look at a confusing document in order to give it clarity.
The law offices of Rodney J. Mason, LTD has experience with all types of probate cases. In addition to classic evidentiary disputes, our firm can also sift through documents and cases in order to make a strong argument in favor of our clients’ interpretations of important will or trust documents. While results cannot be guaranteed of course, we can draw on our experience and wisdom to do everything possible for our clients.