4 Common Will Disputes that Need Legal Intervention

Posted on: 16 July 2020

A will is a crucial document that requires sobriety and serious consideration of the law when drafting it. The legal document recognises the beneficiaries of your assets and the executor. A well-drafted will necessitates a smooth transfer of properties and money to the right individuals. However, even if you follow the correct legal procedures when drafting your will, disputes are likely to occur in the future. When extreme will disputes arise, the inheritance of your assets will not meet your expectations. Read on to understand the most common will disputes that may require legal intervention.

1. Perceived Inequity

Some family members may feel that the decedent was unfair when distributing assets on the will. For instance, a child may feel that he/she got less cash or assets than the other siblings. In such a scenario, issues are likely to occur, leading to legal disputes. Lack of coordination and failure of intentionality are the common causes of inequalities when writing a will. An experienced lawyer will provide the best options to solve this dispute. 

2. Unauthorised Transfer of Assets

Executors and some family members may decide to transfer assets illegally to themselves due to greed. In such an event, a dispute will occur because the other beneficiaries will feel conned. The person given authority to oversee the transfer of assets by the decedent should enhance fairness. Forensic accountants will help the beneficiaries understand the malicious activities of the greedy parties. Through legal interventions, it is possible to claw back the assets transferred illegally. 

3. Execution Delays

After the owner of the assets dies, the executor should not take years to distribute the assets to the beneficiaries. Within 12 months after the property owner's death, the executor should inform the heirs of the procedure to be used in the transfer of assets. Once they feel that the executor is delaying to initiate the transfer of assets, they may move to the court of law to acquire a deadline for obtaining a grant of probate by the executor. 

4. Undue Influence

If one of the family members influenced the decedent when drafting the will, disputes are likely to happen. In such a scenario, the other beneficiaries may move to the court of law to challenge the will. The judge may declare such a will invalid. However, there must be enough evidence to prove that there was an undue influence when writing the will.

Preparing an inclusive will is one of the best decisions that everyone should make before death. Property and will disputes will occur if you fail to follow the right procedures when preparing your will. Hiring a professional to help you understand the appropriate steps to write a will minimises these disputes. However, if the conflicts occur, the beneficiaries should seek legal assistance to enhance fairness.