When a person dies, their estate may be subject to dispute, either for conflict over the executors of the Will or the disposition of heirlooms. The assets transferred through a will or a trust may also be the subject of dispute.
Disputes over heirlooms
Estate dispute Palm Springs, CA often involve heirlooms, which are non-titled personal property, such as family heirlooms. These items can become the cause of intense feuds among family members. Developing a mutually agreeable framework is essential to avoid conflict over these items. This way, each party can prepare themselves for the likely outcome. While there are many ways to distribute items in an estate, one way to avoid disputes is to leave specific bequests. For example, you should discuss the details if you want to go to an heirloom with a child. However, if you do not want to leave a specific legacy for your family heirlooms, it won’t be easy to divide the item fairly.
Conflicts over executors
When two parties disagree about who should be the executor of a Will, there may be a conflict of interest. For example, the executor of the Will could be the beneficiary of an asset, which creates a conflict of interest. If a beneficiary objects to the appointment of the executor, she may take legal action against the executor to appoint someone else. If the executors disagree, they can seek judicial advice before proceeding with legal action. This will ensure that the problem executor is not penalized by the other party’s legal costs.
Disputes over property conveyed by a will or trust
A will or trust is a legal document that transfers property from one individual to another. Disputes may arise when a beneficiary does not receive their rightful share of the property. This can be due to various factors, including misrepresentation of the deceased’s intent, forgery of the will or trust document, or duress. In such a case, it is essential to seek the advice of an experienced estate attorney. The contents of a family trust can be very varied, ranging from cash to certain types of investment accounts. While monetary amounts can be involved in a trust property dispute, trust disputes are typically resolved by referring to the original trust document. When possible, judges try to refer to the original document to ensure the original intentions of the trust creator are upheld.
Common grounds for contesting a will
There are several common grounds for contesting a will. Some are simple, but others may require proof. Some grounds involve fraud or undue influence. In such cases, a testator may have been manipulated to sign a will, despite not realizing that they are doing so. This may be the result of deception, misinformation, or physical violence. Many of the grounds for contesting a will are procedural. A contestant’s attorney will often plead multiple settings to contest the Will successfully. These issues arose because there was an error in creating the document. For instance, a will may not have been appropriately signed, have no witnesses present, or be incomplete.
Alternative dispute resolution options
There are many alternatives to a courtroom for resolving estate disputes. Mediation and collaborative law effectively resolve conflicts without a full trial. Both ways allow you to retain control of the proceedings while avoiding litigation’s potential costs and emotional toll. Arbitration is another popular form of alternative dispute resolution. The process involves a neutral third party, an arbitrator, who listens to both sides and makes a decision. The parties typically negotiate the guidelines of arbitration. These decisions are usually binding and cannot be appealed. While arbitration is more expensive than litigation and mediation, the benefits can make it an attractive alternative to litigation.
Cost of litigation
Litigation is a complex process requiring careful planning and attention to detail. The stakes are high because the court has significant power to make decisions and requires all the facts to be in evidence before it. Unless both sides can agree on a resolution, litigation costs will need to be funded out of pocket. While litigants can seek reimbursement from the losing party, chances of recovering the total cost of litigation are slim. Typically, a losing party will bear the costs of litigation unless they can show that they were the cause of the dispute. But sometimes, prices can be deducted from the estate or awarded to the unsuccessful party.