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By: Scott Grossman on October 19th, 2016

Evidence of Mental Incompetence

If you suspect that a will or trust fails to meet a loved one’s intentions because they suffered mental incompetence when the will was made or executed, it’s serious business. One of the first things you’ll want to do is contact a qualified probate attorney. You will need to provide evidence of mental incompetence. California probate litigation and will contests are tricky even for specialists in the field. You’ll want to be sure that your case has the best possible chances of success. Additionally, you also want to minimize the likelihood of anyone successfully filing a suit against you.

There are a few things to do before talking to an attorney. First, determine your reason for believing the testator was not mentally competent when they made or signed the will. Bring any evidence of mental incompetence you already have in your possession with you to the initial meeting.

Gather Physical Evidence of Mental Incompetence Already in your Possession

Alerting the executor, the executor’s lawyer, or any of the other beneficiaries that you’re contemplating contesting the will or acquiring evidence that could be construed as underhanded, may jeopardize your case. Take your attorney’s advice before doing anything else.

Possible evidence demonstrating a lack of mental capacity includes:

  • Earlier versions of the will, especially if the distribution of assets was dramatically different.
  • Medical records.
  • Letters or other personal communications from the testator. Make sure these forms are from the time the testator executed the will.

If you are ready to start your case, then please give us a call or fill out our Get Help Now form. A comprehensive overview of California Probate is available here. Should you have additional questions about trust litigation, you will find plenty of useful information in our Learning Center.