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Question for those that know law regarding death and wills.

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posted on Jan, 25 2016 @ 11:56 AM
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I'm writing this thread to seek information and/or advice regarding death, wills, and all of that fun stuff nobody really likes talking about. I'm coming here because ATS has a lot of smart people(arguable) who may have had similar experiences and hopefully shed some light on this confusing conundrum. Let me start by giving the details.

My brother and I have different fathers. I'm very estranged from my father for personal reasons. My father remarried a great lady, and they had 2 children together. My brother has a decent relationship with his father. His father remarried a nasty lady, but they had no children.

Now, I did see my father a couple of years ago when my sister had a 2nd wedding to celebrate 15 years of marriage. We tried seeing if much of a relationship is there, it seemed like there could be, but he stopped communication after they left. Afterwards, my aunt sat me down and talked to me about my father and his will. She claims that he spoke with her quietly(away from step-mom), and told her to tell me that when he passes away, I have to contest his will.

That sounded so strange to me. Why should I contest his will?? If I have to contest it, does that mean I'm not in his will?? I understand if I'm not, because we haven't known each other in 22 years. But, at the same time, I'm his first-born son, and thanks to his signing the birth certificate without my mother, I'm a jr. because I have his name. So, that felt like a shocker, I'm not in my own fathers will. That really didn't help with the issues I already had with him. After some time pondering on it, I decided I didn't care. If my own father didn't want to leave me anything in his death, so be it, because it's not like he helped much during his life.

So that was it, I left it at that, but then my brother came to me with a similar situation. Since his dad is in the process of leaving his wife and starting again with our mom, those two have had a lot of conversations regarding what needs to be done. His father told my mother that when he passes away, that my brother has to contest his will. Now that came to me as a shocker as well, because my brother has had a decent relationship with his father. Sure, it's not the greatest one, but they always kept in touch. So, that tells me that his wife must've convinced him at some time to leave everything to her, none to anyone else. Sad part is, the only other person in his life is my brother, and his three children. That's part of the reason why his dad wants to return here, he's old, lonely, and wants to be around his son and his grandchildren before he goes.

So now his father wants him to contest his will, just like my father wants me to contest my fathers will. It just makes me wonder, why?? Wouldn't it be better to change your will before you die?? Or is this their way of not wanting to be bothered, and letting the living fight over scraps??

So, why would either of our fathers want us to contest their wills rather than actually changing them?? Does anyone know enough to shed some light on this for me?? Thank you in advance.

edit on 25-1-2016 by Necrobile because: (no reason given)




posted on Jan, 25 2016 @ 12:03 PM
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Contact an attorney who specializes in probate law. A legal will and testament attested by an attorney to have been done without duress and in a proper frame of mind is going to be challenging to contest.



posted on Jan, 25 2016 @ 12:07 PM
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If the will was made when he was arguably in sound mind, then nothing will happen. I just watched this happen with my uncle passing through suicide. there was some trying to get his will contested and it was shut down (the idea that he must have been unstable or depressed upon writing it).

As far as your dad telling your aunt to tell you..etc..well, not legally binding very much, anyone can claim that "oh, he said before he passed to tell the will lawyers I get it all."

Talk informally to a lawyer if you are that curious, but I wouldn't get any hopes up even a little bit.

A person alive doesn't tell someone to contest a will..they simply call for their lawyer and change it..if a person changes their mind minutes before death, well, a bit too late really.



posted on Jan, 25 2016 @ 12:08 PM
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It would be far easier if they just changed the will, because contesting a will, will only make the lawyers richer and probably leave a trail of hurt and pain along the way.

If you are already being advised to contest a will, then is the contents contained within, really the person's last will? In your Brother's case, it should be a straightforward case of his Father changing his will, now that he has got back with your Mum.

Your case is obviously different, as it sounds like your Father's wife must be the person advising your Father on what goes to whom.

Personally, if I was left out of a will, I'd take it on the chin and just get on with my life. Good luck with whatever you choose, when the time comes.



posted on Jan, 25 2016 @ 12:08 PM
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a reply to: Necrobile
You do need proper legal advice.
On what grounds were you supposed to contest the will? Depending on the legal jurisdiction where you live, grounds might be hard to find.
This is also a puzzle in psychology. As you say, it would be easier for the father to change his own will. If he feels bullied by those around him, that might be regarded as duress, but would be hard to prove.



posted on Jan, 25 2016 @ 12:09 PM
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a reply to: Necrobile

Each state has different laws. only take advice from lawyers .



posted on Jan, 25 2016 @ 12:16 PM
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I appreciate the responses, guys, it gives me some insight as to what to tell my brother. I'm not necessarily looking for advice on how to contest it, I was just more curious why both fathers would recommend contesting it, when it would be better for all to change the will.

As for my father, I've pretty much given up on that one. Sometimes I even do wonder if he truly told my aunt that, rather than me. I guess I won't know unless somehow he and I form a relationship before he passes, but with how often I've tried throughout the years, I doubt he'll reciprocate, like normal.

As for my brothers father, I told him last night the one thing he doesn't want to do: Talk to his father about it. I told him that's going to be the best way to do things, and from what I'm reading here, I was right. I'm heading over to his house in a few, so I'll show him this thread.


I know a lawyer is the best one to speak to regarding this, but I was hoping for words of wisdom from those who've been through it, so once again, thank you all.



posted on Jan, 25 2016 @ 12:25 PM
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a reply to: Necrobile

Each is different totally case by case....no 2 ways are totally correct for everyone. A couple things though..A will needs to be filed with the court, county,etc....so it can be dispersed as final wishes of the deceased. 2nd is the kind tossed in a drawer and not filed.

A person who dies without a filed will dies in-testate (without a recorded will). That requires Probate court to get involved and decide who gets what. It gets worse from there. New or living wife survivor allowances who paid what for funeral expenses... it gets deep.

Its pretty much the same in most countries like the US. Check with a probate attorney. You could have some rights, no rights, get nothing or everything. Its soooo different case by case....

At least it needs to be recorded or probate gets involved. See a lawyer....



posted on Jan, 25 2016 @ 12:33 PM
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Each state has different legalities surrounding just about everything. Add others have said, you're best off talking to a lawyer that specialises in wills and is local to you.

I always strongly encourage members asking for legal advice here a couple things. First, don't just blindly accept what you read or what someone tells you online. As the saying goes, "Your Google search doesn't equate my law degree." Secondly, possibly the best place to go for legal advice online is Avvo. Real, verified lawyers will answer your question. It's also a great place to research the right lawyer to suit your needs.



posted on Jan, 25 2016 @ 12:43 PM
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a reply to: Necrobile

Not to sound disrespectful to your dilemma, but aren't these two grown men taking the easy way out? I would be scared to die knowing I took the cowardly way out by trying to appease those I would never see again as we know life? I am just trying to wrap my head around this whole issue of whispering a secret to another relative to tell the intended to fight a decision I never wanted to make in the first place?

What are the odds of this happening with two different siblings with two different fathers?

Take the high road my friend and tell the rest of the vultures you refuse to feed......


edit on 25-1-2016 by seeker1963 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 25 2016 @ 01:09 PM
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I'm not an attorney and definitely didn't sleep in a Holiday Inn last night. However, after the experiencing the bat crazed insanity of family members who think they are owed something on three different occasions when a family member passed, all I can tell you is to try your best to get your father and other family members to sit down and get his will straightened out now so there is no confusion when the time comes.

If you want to see people's real character, let them think there is some money available when a family member passes.

Pretty much tore my family apart over a few grand.



posted on Jan, 25 2016 @ 03:40 PM
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originally posted by: seeker1963
a reply to: Necrobile

Not to sound disrespectful to your dilemma, but aren't these two grown men taking the easy way out?



Oh don't worry, I don't feel any disrespect, because I totally agree with you. I spoke with my mom regarding this today during lunch, and from everything she told me, it's like he doesn't want to be bothered. He won't file for divorce, he won't speak with a lawyer, he won't do anything that he should regarding his future plans. So yeah, he's taking the easy way out.

As for my father, well, since I'm extremely estranged from him, I have no idea what's going on there. I guess if he and I ever open up lines of communication, I can ask him wtf. lol But every single time we've tried talking, after a day or two, he just stops replying. I keep hearing through the grapevine from my sister that he's depressed, but he doesn't seem to be doing much to fix it. lol

cmdrkeenkid, thanks for the link to avvo, I'll go there later this afternoon when I have a bit more free time and ask around there. If nothing else, it's good information to actually give my brothers dad so he knows what kind of situation he'll be putting his son in if he doesn't change things in his will.


Edumakated, I know what you're saying. When my grandma passed away, things got so bad in my family that 12 years later it's still divided. The things people who are supposed to love each other do when they feel they are owed something. Money, possessions, it's all very sad. After that happened, my mom feared it would happen to us when she passed, so my mom used to tell me that she'd have me divide up everything when she passes, because I'm the only one she trusts to be fair to her children and grandchildren. Thankfully today she told me she'd just write everything in the will, that way nobody can be mad at anyone else.
edit on 25-1-2016 by Necrobile because: Fixing typos XD



posted on Jan, 25 2016 @ 03:48 PM
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a reply to: Necrobile

No problem. It's a good resource, but nothing given over the website is binding. I wouldn't recommend flaunting any legal response in their faces beforehand as it may hurt your case later on. It could also give them time to prep for any legal proceedings you may set up. Best to "speak softly and carry a big stick" when it comes to the courts.



posted on Jan, 25 2016 @ 03:56 PM
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originally posted by: cmdrkeenkid
a reply to: Necrobile

No problem. It's a good resource, but nothing given over the website is binding. I wouldn't recommend flaunting any legal response in their faces beforehand as it may hurt your case later on. It could also give them time to prep for any legal proceedings you may set up. Best to "speak softly and carry a big stick" when it comes to the courts.


Oh, no worries there, many have told me I should've gone to law school because I'd be good at it. I may not know the law 100%, but I know how to think like a lawyer in regards to protecting your arse in our modern society, and unfortunately, I had to do it a few times related to some bad people I know.



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