Will Contest

Will contests usually entail some element of undue influence or lack of capacity. Undue influence exists when some person exerts such a degree of undue influence over another’s affairs that the undue influencer’s will overcomes the will of the other person. This is usually seen where a purported caregiver or relative takes over the affairs of an elder. The will or estate plan is changed in favor of the undue influencer, usually to the detriment of other family members. Lack of capacity usually exists with seniors who suffer from dementia, Alzheimer’s, or other mental impairment to such a degree that the law does not recognize that they have the legal capacity to make a will or trust. Sometimes, the executor will seek the return of property which has been wrongfully taken, or concealed, from the estate under Probate Code Section 850.