For invalidating a
A presumption of undue influence can result when a fiduciary relationship exists between the person making the will and a person who receives property by the terms of the will.A fiduciary relationship exists if these four factors are proven: (1) the existence of an attorney-client relationship or other fiduciary relationship between the decedent and the beneficiary such that the beneficiary is the dominant party, (2) that the decedent reposed trust and confidence in the beneficiary, (3) that the beneficiary prepared or procured the preparation of a will, and (4) that the beneficiary would receive a substantial benefit under the terms of the will.The courts strictly enforce the requirement of standing.A will may be invalidated because there was undue influence exerted on the person making the will.The attorney who prepared the will has an interest in defending the integrity of the will almost always testify that the will properly stated the wishes of the decedent.Certain evidence rules may prevent the admission of testimony regarding conversations between the deceased and persons making a claim that the will is invalid.
Undue influence can be exerted by direct beneficiaries or by third parties, such as the spouse of a beneficiary.
Anyone contesting a will on grounds of lack of capacity has the burden of proving that the deceased was not of sound mind.
The proof must relate to a time at or near the signing of the will since the will may only be invalidated if it is proven that the person lacked testamentary capacity at the time the will was signed.
Persons who are infirm physically or suffer from dementia certainly can meet this standard, even though they are unable to think or function at a normal level.
Contesting the will can be difficult if there is not clear evidence of incapacity or undue influence.An emotionally invalidating environment is any situation involving other people in which they respond to your expressions of emotion inappropriately or inconsistently.