Contesting Wills FAQ
Family members who have been left out of a will or who believe they have received an inadequate inheritance may wish to challenge a deceased’s will. There are several ways in which a will can be set aside or varied.
How Do I Vary A Will?
Children or spouses who believe they have been treated unfairly by the deceased have recourse under British Columbia’s Wills, Estates and Succession Act. They can apply to have a will varied. A variation action can be brought to court if the will has made inadequate provisions for a child or spouse.
There are two situations in which a will can be varied. They are:
- A spouse or child was left out of the will
- A spouse or child received an unfair share of the estate
The will has to be probated before a family member may make a court application. The application for variation must occur within 180 days of the will being probated.
How Do You Challenge A Will?
There are also situations in which family members may ask for a will to be declared invalid. A will can be contested for several reasons, including:
- It was improperly written or witnessed.
- It was made while the individual lacked mental capacity.
- It was made with undue influence.
If it is successfully challenged, the will is declared invalid. The most recent will before the invalidated one can then be used. If there is no other will, the deceased will be considered to have died without a will.
The lawyers at McLellan Herbert, Barristers & Solicitors have over 60 combined years of litigation experience and can provide strategic advice and representation for clients involved in wills and estate litigation.
Contact Our Firm — You May Qualify For A Contingency Arrangement
Our Vancouver-based lawyers have the skills to assess your case on its merits. We also offer contingency arrangements on certain estate litigation files. Call us today at 604-901-5186 or 800-449-4858 to learn whether your case qualifies. You can also reach us by email.