Ontario Will Contest Attorney
Contesting a will is not an uncommon ground in family law disputes. If you believe that a will from a deceased loved one is fraudulent, you can bring it to court for scrutiny. Our knowledgeable Ontario will contest attorney can help you challenge the contents of the will and demand what is rightfully yours. Schedule your free consultation today to find out how we can help.
An Ontario Will Contest Attorney Can Help You Win Your Will Challenges
Many people believe that challenging a will is an act of financial interest. However, this is not always true. If you believe that the court has acknowledged a questionable will, you reserve every right to challenge it and protect the interests of your deceased family member.
The challenge of contesting a will lies in proving it was a fraud, made under undue influence, or lacking the necessary requirements. Getting ahold of the essential paperwork and information needed to solidify your claim is impossible without legal assistance.
Estate litigation lawyers are legal professionals specializing in this area of family law. They can help you investigate the will, develop a compelling legal strategy, and gather helpful pieces of evidence to prove your claims.
Alden Law Firm houses many of the brilliant estate litigation attorneys in Los Angeles. With our proficiency in California’s Family Law Act and estate litigation laws, we can help you build a solid case to disprove a questionable will.
Schedule your free consultation with us today!
The Grounds for Challenging a Will in Ontario
In California, you can challenge a will if you are financially dependent on the deceased person, such as a legally married spouse, common-law spouse, children of the deceased, estate trustee, etc.
You may contest a will for several reasons, but we outlined some of the most common in the following sections.
Undue influence means that the person making the will was forced, manipulated, or controlled to write the contents of the will.
This happens for several reasons, such as threatening the safety of the testator’s family, persuading the testator using guilt, or other unethical methods to persuade the testator.
If you have reasons to believe that the deceased didn’t have testamentary freedom when writing the will, this can be a ground to challenge a will. Your attorney can help you investigate the facts surrounding the creation of the will.
Unmet Formal Requirements
Challenging the will by technicality involves inspecting if the testator met all the legal requirements of a valid will, such as the following:
- The testator is 18 years old and above;
- The testator is of sound mind and memory;
- The testator voluntarily created the will;
- Two competent and disinterested witnesses properly witnessed the testator writing the will.
If one or more of these requirements are unmet, the court could invalidate the will’s legality.
If you believe that a will was forged, falsified, or supported by misleading documents, you have every right to contest the will. However, the burden of evidence lies on you. You must provide sufficient evidence supporting your claims.
If you can successfully prove this, the court will undoubtedly set aside the will. Falsifying documents and identity theft is a grave crime in California with hefty punishments.
Lack of Testamentary Capacity
You can challenge a will by claiming that the testator lacked testamentary or mental capacity when they made the will. Testamentary capacity refers to the testator’s ability to recognize the outcome or repercussions of writing a will.
It’s not easy to determine if the testator possessed sufficient testamentary capacity when they made the will. You must speak with an attorney immediately if you see unfamiliar names or unreasonable wealth distribution in the will.
How Can You Challenge a Will in Ontario?
Challenging a will in Ontario is complex and requires the help of a legal professional. Here’s what you can expect from the process:
Consultation With a Will Contest Lawyer
When you are ready to challenge a will, the first step is to speak with an experienced estate litigation attorney. They can help you initiate an investigation and decide whether you have a legitimate case.
A dispute over a will typically involve gathering evidence and interviewing witnesses to support your claims. Your attorney can help you collect these pieces of evidence, such as medical records, financial documents, and other relevant information.
Notice of Objection
Once the case is established, your next move is to file a Notice of Objection to the court. The notice of objection is a formal document that states the grounds for your challenge and outlines the evidence you have to support it.
Filing this notice will start a lawsuit in which both parties, including yourself and representatives of the deceased’s estate, can present their arguments before a judge who will decide the matter.
Keep in mind that only individuals who are financially dependent on the testator can issue an estate dispute. This includes dependent family members, married spouses, children of the testator, etc.
Determining Mental Capacity
Once the notice of objection is in effect, the court will investigate whether the testator had sufficient mental capacity when they created the will.
This investigation involves interviewing witnesses close to the testator, assessing medical records, and examining other evidence that can prove or disprove testamentary capacity. The court typically relies on expert opinions from doctors or psychiatrists for this purpose.
The Winner’s Legal Costs
If the case ended in your favor, the unsuccessful party would have to pay your legal costs. These costs may include your attorney’s fees, court costs, document preparation fees, expert witness testimony, and other related expenses.
Consequently, the court may also impose additional fees if they believe the will challenge is unnecessary and results in a waste of court resources.
Hiring the best will contest attorney will ensure that you maximize your chances of achieving a successful outcome. Finding an experienced lawyer who has previously handled similar cases and can help you make informed decisions is crucial.
With their expertise, they can guide you every step of the way and help you challenge a fraudulent or questionable will.
Other Financial Costs To Consider
Contesting the validity of a will comes with a hefty price tag, and it’s essential to consider all the potential costs involved. Depending on the outcome of your challenge, you may also be responsible for paying inheritance taxes or estate administration fees.
Recovering paperwork or records related to the will can also be expensive, so it’s important to remember that you may have to pay additional fees if the documents are not readily available.
Make sure you discuss all these potential costs with your attorney before initiating a suit. They can help you determine a budget and estimate how much the case might cost.
You should also consider consulting with a qualified financial advisor to discuss any other potential consequences that may arise from contesting a will. This way, you can plan for the financial costs and ensure that you’re adequately prepared.
Contact Our Ontario Will Contest Lawyer for Legal Assistance
Don’t settle for a deal that’s not in your favor. If you think the will isn’t fair or valid, contact our experienced estate litigation lawyer for legal assistance. We can help you challenge a fraudulent or questionable will and protect your rights and interests throughout the process. Call us now at (213) 214-6937 to schedule your free consultation.