What Issues Can Invalidate a Will in Maryland? | What to Know

To learn more about what issues can invalidate a will in Maryland, do not hesitate to reach out to our firm today to speak with a skilled Montgomery County will drafting attorney.

What can invalidate a will?

There are several different types of issues that can surface that can invalidate a will or result in challenges. Some of these problems include, and are not limited to:

  • Last-Minute Modifications
    • One of the most commonly experienced problems is if a deceased person executed a will close to the end of life that significantly changes their estate plans. Once a will is prepared, an individual who wants to contest the document should look at a number of different things to decide whether the document is valid. When it comes to estate planning documents made near the end of a person’s life, a clear analysis should be made about whether the person had the proper mental capacity to execute the document.
    • Also, if a person is dying or experiencing mental disorders, that person could likely be vulnerable to the influence of other people who may direct them to modify the terms of their estate plan. Essentially, whenever an estate planning document is made in the last part of a person’s life, these documents must be reviewed carefully.
  • Undue Influence
    • Additionally, an issue occurs when a person gets control of the deceased individual’s finances and health care, and a new will is prepared. When an individual has put themselves in the life of a deceased person and it seems that they have acquired control of the deceased individual’s life, it typically implies a confidential relationship. If a confidential relationship exists and a will is made that benefits this person, a presumption that a will is invalid could occur. As a result, if a person has power of attorney or when a person is overexerting control of a deceased individual, a newly created will should be reviewed.
  • Issues Concerning Mental Capacity
    • Wills can also be looked into if they were made at the time that a deceased person’s mental capacity was uncertain because of either a degenerative condition or an intervening event that caused mental incapacity. In order to adequately execute a will, a deceased individual must have the mental capacity to do so. This suggests that a person must appreciate the assets they own and must value them to whom they want to pass on their assets. Even though the standard is low, times exist when a will could be validated as the result of a deceased individual experiencing a degenerative mental condition. When wills are managed under these conditions, wills might be contested because of a lack of mental ability.

Contact our experienced Maryland firm

The attorneys at JD Katz have years of experience compassionately guiding clients in Maryland through the estate planning and administration process. Our firm also has experience with matters of elder law, business law, tax law, and litigation. For a legal team that will put your needs first, contact JD Katz today.