Many people assume that, as long as there is a will in place, there will be absolutely no issues with the distribution of an estate and settlement of the deceased's affairs. However, this is not always the case. There are many reasons why there could still be some conflict that could delay the settlement of the estate. Here are some potential sources of conflict and tips to address those issues if they arise.
Someone Could Contest The Will
In some cases, if there were multiple versions of the deceased's will, someone may contest the final version if they feel that they were treated unfairly and the will was not actually legitimate. This could lead to some significant time spent in probate, during which time the versions of the will must be evaluated and a judge will determine which one is the version that should be honored.
The Executor Refuses To Serve
Every will should name an executor of the estate. This person is responsible for ensuring that the wishes of the deceased's will are carried out as requested. In most cases, that executor is named when the will is written. However, if the executor is not asked about serving that role in advance, he or she may not be willing or capable of doing it.
The same can apply if the executor is willing at the time, but then family circumstances change and he or she is either no longer in the picture or is unwilling to perform the duties. That is why it is important for everyone to keep their executor up-to-date in the will.
In the event that the executor doesn't want to serve, you can reach out to a probate law attorney for help.
There Are Breach Of Duty Allegations
The executor must serve in the best interest of the deceased, carrying out his or her wishes as they are detailed in the will. If that executor opts to disregard some of those wishes, someone in the family could have them removed as executor through a claim of breach of duty. You'll need a probate law attorney to help you navigate this. If the executor is found to be in breach, he or she will be replaced.
For more help with the potential problems of dealing with a will and probate court, talk with a probate law attorney near you today. He or she can answer all of your questions and help you navigate the process.