For some reason, relatives who usually get along fine stop getting along and cooperating with one another once there is an estate or property that is to be divided by an executor or administered by a trustee. People fight over land, jewelry and personal possessions. They fight with their siblings and with their children. They fight to save the farm, and to sell the farm. They fight even though they may not know their rights or their obligations. The estate and probate attorneys at the Hancock Law Firm, PLLC, have experience with the full range of estate planning and probate administration issues, including those which involve will contests and other disputes.Will Challenges and Probate Disputes Under Mississippi Law
There are many ways a will can be challenged or contested under Mississippi law. Below are some of the most common grounds for contesting a will:
Lack of Capacity – It may be alleged that the person making the will (the testator) was not of sound mind when the will was executed and did not fully understand or appreciate what he or she was doing. This ground is often alleged when an older person revokes a previous will and executes a new one which is strikingly different.
Lack of Intent – A will may be declared invalid if it is the product of mistake, fraud, undue influence or duress. These situations are sometimes alleged when a person was under the exclusive care of another in his or her final days, and the last will and testament favors the caregiver over other family members.
Invalid Wills – If the statute of wills was not properly followed, a will may be invalid because it is improperly signed or witnessed. Also, attempts to alter or revoke an existing will are sometimes made without the advice or assistance of an experienced wills and trusts lawyer, with the result that the will is subject to challenge and not given its proper effect.Comprehensive Will Contest Lawyers
At the Hancock Law Firm, our clients range from heirs who have disputes over land that goes back hundreds of years to second spouses in disputes with grown children from their deceased spouse’s former marriage. Our lawyers represent the beneficiary, groups of beneficiaries, or the estate in a wide range of will contests and probate disputes, including:
- Assets disputes
- Breach of fiduciary duty to challenge the way in which a trustee manages an estate or trust
- Contested wills and will disputes when family members or beneficiaries disagree
- Determination of heirship
- Estate litigation related to property disputes
- Petition for removal of an executor
- Probate administration challenges for instances when the estate is closed without serving all of the heirs
- Trust disputes, including trustee financial mismanagement
If you are challenging or defending the validity of a will or the actions of an executor or trustee, or for any other probate dispute in Jackson and surrounding communities, contact the Hancock Law Firm for advice and representation from knowledgeable, skilled and experienced Mississippi wills, trusts and estates lawyers.