A death of a loved one is always a difficult time for family members who are left behind. But it becomes increasingly difficult to deal with the loss when will disputes occur. When a loved one passes away, he often leaves behind a will, a document he drafted and signed, outlining his plans for how his estate will be distributed once he has passed. The will outlines the different properties and assets that are to be distributed to the beneficiaries also named in the will. Oftentimes, towards the end of one’s life, inheritance lawyers and estate lawyers in Melbourne are enlisted to help draft a last will and testament to ensure that it is iron clad and that will disputes are avoided. The Balance outlines a good estate planning strategy that helps avoid will disputes. But if you are a beneficiary or family member who is interested in disputing a will, you must know that there are a few things to consider.

What does a will dispute involve?

When the testator passes, his or her will must be submitted to a court for the process of probate. This is often done by the executor of will, who submits the document to the court, which then approves it for administration. Administering a will means distributing the assets to the intended beneficiaries, as outlined in the will. Once a notice has been filed, this will provide individuals to raise their concerns as to how the properties and assets are distributed. Sometimes, parties who believe that they were wrongly excluded in the will or beneficiaries who believe they are inadequately provided for (or believe other beneficiaries are overcompensated for), shall file will disputes.

Defining the grounds for disputing a will

There are several grounds for disputing a will. Such will disputes are dependent on scenarios in which beneficiaries believe they were not properly provided for in the will, especially if the asset of property they are to receive is less than the value they were entitled to. Will disputes can also occur when a beneficiary passes away before the testator does or if the beneficiary dies during the probate process. Will disputes can also occur when some assets are missing from or have been sold before the testator’s death, or if fractions of an estate are not accounted for in the final will. Will disputes can also spring from the way executors administer the estate. Administrative disputes occur when the beneficiaries have an issue on how the executor distributes the estate, especially if there are errors or delays. Construction disputes are a type of will disputes that focuses on the wording of the will. Clients often enlist the services of estate lawyers in Melbourne if there is ambiguity in certain parts of a will and when executors and beneficiaries are unsure of how the testator intended the will to read.

How to avoid will disputes

Will disputes can be avoided from the very beginning through a no contest clause. A no contest clause in a will provides a precaution to those who intend to contest a will or cause will disputes. This clause often outlines the consequences that should occur if a beneficiary decides to contest a will. Of course, to avoid having to include a no contest clause, the testator should also set up an estate plan to properly manage the estate even while he is alive. The estate plan should always be kept up to date to avoid issues in administering the will once he or she passes. It is also advisable to consult estate lawyers in Melbourne to ensure that estate planning is executed smoothly.

Enlisting inheritance lawyers to resolve will disputes

Will disputes are often best undertaken with the professional services of inheritance lawyers. These lawyers, who specialise in estate law, will be in the best position to provide advice on how to proceed with dispute claims. Such claims will require supporting documentation and proof, in the event that your dispute goes to court. Estate lawyers in Melbourne are also equipped to validate your eligibility to file a dispute and validate your claims. They will provide sufficient advice on the mediation procedures and processes involved in will disputes.

If you are looking for estate lawyers in Melbourne, consider getting in touch with Hentys Lawyers, estate law specialists backed by over 25 years of experience providing support to beneficiaries like you. Hentys Lawyers provide efficient solutions on a “No Win No Fee” basis, ensuring that you reach a satisfactory resolution. At Hentys Lawyers, you are sure to receive sound advice so you’re sure to get the result that meets your needs.