Probate can be an overwhelming process, even when it goes smoothly. When there are disputes, it can only make the situation that much more upsetting.
Below, we briefly examine a few common disputes that can arise during this process. We also discuss options that parties in these situations may want to consider in order to prevent or resolve them.
Challenging the administrator
Whether the courts or the deceased selects an administrator of an estate, he or she will have numerous responsibilities. If family members believe an administrator is not fulfilling these duties properly, they may file a legal challenge seeking removal of the administrator.
To avoid these types of disputes, administrators who are unsure of their duties can secure legal counsel to help them avoid mistakes and oversights.
Contesting a will
There are several reasons why family members might challenge a will. For instance, if someone believes the will or other estate planning documentation is invalid or the result of undue influence, he or she might challenge it. Interested parties might also contest a will if there is reason to believe the person was not of sound mind when he or she created it or if the document was forged.
Setting aside a will is a serious matter, so consider these claims carefully and with legal guidance. To prevent these disputes, the creators of an estate plan should be diligent in creating and revising planning documents.
Transferring property and assets to beneficiaries can be more difficult than people think, particularly if there are issues locating the asset in the first place. If administrators or family members cannot find property because someone might be concealing it or because they do not know how to access it, then fights can erupt.
Again, legal counsel can be crucial in both preventing and avoiding these types of disputes. Often, attorneys have tools and resources to track down assets that other people do not.
Whether you are an estate administrator or a family member of the deceased, these types of disputes can complicate an already difficult situation. Taking steps to prevent them or resolve them as quickly and peacefully as possible can make it easier to navigate the probate process in Wisconsin.