practice areas

Estate disputes often revolve around some indication that the will may not represent the person’s true desires. For instance, an heir may contest that:

  • The person did not have the mental capacity to sign the will
  • Another heir forged the will
  • The person was forced to sign the will

One tactic to avoid this is to get a videographer for the day that the will is signed. The footage can show the person’s mental capacity — it’s wise to add in a conversation before or after the signing to demonstrate the person’s mental capacity at that time — and it can show that he or she really did draft and sign that specific will. It can also show that the person did it without duress, which they can attest to in the video.

Does this make the will bulletproof? It can help, but it does not mean no one will dispute it.

After all, an heir could still contest that undue influence was involved. Perhaps another beneficiary spent months or years convincing the person to change the will in their favor, while also convincing them that that was what they wanted. This type of manipulation runs deep, and the person could appear to be making their own decisions on video when someone else is really guiding their hand for financial gain.

This helps to show just how complex these cases can get and the steps people will take. If you find yourself in an estate dispute, there is a lot on the line, so it’s important to understand all of the legal options that you have.