contestthumbnailFrom Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

A will contest, in the law of property, is a formal objection raised against the validity of a will, based on the contention that the will does not reflect the actual intent of the testator (the party who made the will). Will contests generally focus on the assertion that the testator lacked testamentary capacity, was operating under an insane delusion, or was subject to undue influence or fraud. A will may be challenged in its entirety, or only in part.

In many states, a legal presumption of undue influence arises where a beneficiary under the will stands in a confidential relationship with the testator.

For example, where a testator leaves property to the attorney who drew up the will.

A will may include an interrorem clause, with language along the lines of “any person who contests this will shall forfeit his legacy”,which operates to disinherit any person who challenges the validity of the will. However, since this clause is within the will itself, a successful challenge to the will renders the clause meaningless.