Do I have grounds to contest my father’s Will?

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Do I have grounds to contest my father’s Will?

I have received a copy of my father’s Will that will be filed for probate in Hamilton County, NY. In it it states that,

Asked on April 9, 2019 under Estate Planning, New York

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

1) Yes, the fact that your father clearly wrote "if he survives me" may well provide grounds for a challenge to your cousin becoming the beneficiary, since wills are enforced as per their clear terms.
2) And if the witnesses did not sign the will, that may also be enough to challenge the will on the grounds of failing the signature requirement.
If you an invalidate the will, then the estate will be distributed as per "intestate succession"--i.e. to you and your brother. While you should never count on winning a challenge to a will (or any court case; you can never predict the outcome 100% in advance), based on what you write, it appears that a challenge would have at least a reasonble chance of success and so may well be worthwhile.


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