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By: Scott Grossman on October 1st, 2016

Six Steps for Proving Fraud When Contesting a California Will

If your loved one passed away and you suspect that he or she was the victim of fraud when preparing or amending his or her will, you may have grounds to challenge the validity of the will. While substantial evidence is required to prove this claim, if fraud is adequately demonstrated, the court will declare the will invalid. A qualified attorney can assist you in evaluating the potential for success when contesting a California will.

What should you do if you hope to prove fraud when contesting a California will? 

  1. Contact an experienced San Diego probate lawyer for assistance in navigating your legal rights.
  2. Determine whether you have standing to challenge the will. In order to qualify, you must either inherit under the will, be a beneficiary of a trust set up by the will, or have been eligible to inherit had your loved one died without a will.
  3. Gather evidence which supports your claims of fraud. You must be able to show that if the fraud had not occurred, the will would have read differently. You also must show that your deceased loved one relied on the lie they was told when drafting the will. Further, you should provide evidence that the person committing the fraud knew they telling a lie or making a misrepresentation.
  4. Gather copies of any prior wills or estate planning documents.
  5. Assemble evidence that demonstrates the state of mind of the deceased at the time he or she passed.
  6. File a motion contesting the will with the probate court.

For more information about contesting a will or trust in California, contact a dedicated San Diego probate attorney. Call our toll-free number today at (888) 443-6590.