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What gives way to wills and trust legal battles?

One of the many responsibilities of the executor of an estate is to take a decedent's many assets and to divide them up between their heirs. What you may not realize, though, is that it's this splitting up of money and property that often leads to contested wills and trust cases.

Wills and trusts are often contested by individuals and charitable entities that expected to receive gifts from the estate, yet they never did.

What many testators, or will writers, and trust owners don't understand is that charitable donations or trusts are essentially contractual obligations. An individual may not be able to withdraw their commitment of funds to a charity if the contract or trust is set up a certain way. This is often why charities will take legal action against a testator's estate if they don't receive the donation that they've been promised.

Many individuals who expected to be heirs will often file suit against an estate because they are written out of a testator's will. The onus falls on them to show that their loved one was subjected to undue influence or that they lacked testamentary capacity when drafting their will if they want to have any hope of getting the latest will thrown out.

There are instances in which executors get sued too. This often happens because they fail to properly administer an estate. If they fail to pay the testator's creditors, file their final tax return or improperly distribute assets, then the executor may be held personally financially liable for their indiscretions. That's why a decedent's representative needs to follow certain protocol when distributing an estate's assets.

In the media, you often hear about wills and trust litigation dragging out years. This isn't an anomaly. There are often competing Florida court schedules, evidence to be compiled and time that has to be set aside to argue your case. All of this can make things quite expensive. An attorney who is experienced in handling such legal matters here in Melbourne will know how to handle your case more efficiently so that you can resolve your matters sooner than later though.

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