Probate MediationProbating a will is a complex process. Sometimes a party/parties will contest the will. When this happens,  mediation in contested probate cases can help save time and money as well as offering creative solutions to the situation.

When a will is contested the estate cannot be finalized until it is resolved, whether by agreement or by a hearing in front of a Judge. Generally, mediations are informal, confidential proceedings whereas hearings are formal and open to the public. Additionally,  mediation allows flexibility in crafting resolutions whereas a Judge is restricted to what is permitted in the Texas Estates Code.

Ways to contest the will:

  1. Multiple wills executed and this one is not the correct one.
  2. The will was forged.
  3. An improperly executed will.
  4. The party was forced into singing the will.

Other unique issues in probate mediation:

  • Burden of proof (this issue alone often determines who wins)
  • Testamentary capacity vs. contractual capacity
  • Credibility of witnesses
  • Interpretation of the language of a will
  • Removal or disqualification of executor
  • Disagreements among executors
  • Estate debts
  • Accounting and tax issues

These are only a few of the issues that may come up in a contested probate case. Having a skilled mediator help you navigate these issues and provide solutions options that work for you is key in probate mediation.

If you would like to read more about probate mediations, check out my blog Blog.

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