When a person dies, their estate is left to whomever was mentioned in their estate plan. But, sometimes, it does not go as simply as one would expect. In situations where there are multiple marriages and children, large amounts of money and property, and other complicated matters, a person’s estate may not be settled easily. An estate dispute is common and may require probate litigation.
No matter how carefully a person plans their estate, an issue can arise after death. A multi-millionaire’s family is fighting over his estate in a dispute that is now being battled in the courtroom. The two sides of the dispute are trying to work out what happened in their father’s final years of life.
The estate is worth more than $60 million and left behind five daughters. Allegations that have arisen include undue influence by the man’s wife, resulting in his children being disinherited, his wife keeping his children’s greeting cards and ripping them up and the wife deleting phone messages from his children.
His children argue that these actions by their step-mother isolated their father from them and poisoned their relationship. His children argue that their father’s heavy drinking led him to be easily manipulated by their step-mother and his wills being changed to exclude the children. The estate will now eventually rest in the hands of a jury.
A Minnesota family does not expect their estate will wind up in the hands of jurors. But, often, there are family circumstances that can occur that cause family members to wonder if there was undue influence, an invalid will, exploitation or other estate dispute matter.
A legal professional who specializes in probate litigation can help their client with their estate problems. An attorney understands how emotional these situations can be and are willing to try and work through these problems before they wind up in a courtroom. There are many ways an attorney can use mediation to resolve these important matters before they become something where a family is torn apart forever.
Probate disputes are personal and emotional. Disputes involving a family’s estate can occur for many reasons and having an attorney who understands the best way to handle these matters is important.
Source: kilgorenewsherald.com, “Two sides detail estate dispute“, James Draper, May 11, 2018