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Contested Trusts and Estates

​The most common type of contested trust or estate matter involves inheritance issues.  At issue often is whether the person who executed the will or trust had sufficient mental capacity to do so.  Another common ground for objection is whether someone else had exerted undue influence and benefitted financially from the will or trust.Challenging Wills, Trusts and Other Transactions Caused by Undue Influence of Other Persons  An important consideration in undue influence cases is whether there was social isolation of the person who executed the will or trust, or whether the person was independently represented by the drafting attorney.  Massachusetts Case of Contested Will of Alice R. Sharis Shows Why Estate Planning Attorneys Need to Meet Alone with Their Clients

The Personal Representative (formerly known as Executor) of an estate or Trustee of a trust has fiduciary duties.  If the Personal Representative or Trustee has a conflict-of-interest or is expected not to handle financial matters appropriately, and if you believe someone else should be placed in charge, you have the right to object to the named person’s appointment to the role.  If the Personal Representative or Trustee provides an inventory or accounting that seems inaccurate, or does not handle the estate or trust thoroughly or economically, you have the right to challenge whatever financial figures are presented to you.