Disputes can arise over the question of whether the Will is valid, whether the Will is truly the last Will and Testament of the Decedent.
Caveat is the name given to a legal action challenging the validity of a Will that has been submitted for Probate. The purpose of the action is to decide whether the Will is the last will and testament of the decedent. The proceeding is before the Superior Court and the issue is decided by a jury. The question for the jury is devisavit vel non. (meaning “he devises or not”)
The most common, though not the only, grounds on which to challenge the Will are undue influence and lack of testamentary capacity. For example, a Will may be submitted for Probate and an interested person may contend that the Will in Probate was created as a result of undue influence upon the decedent. The person may then file a Caveat and ask that the Will be invalidated and that the estate be administered as though the Will never existed. After the trial, the jury will render a verdict and an Order will be entered accordingly.
This is only one example of the many situations that arise. Of course, the outcome of any litigation is subject to factors which cannot always be foreseen and cannot be predicted with certainty.
If you have questions about your will, or the will of a loved one, call me today at 336-275-1607.