Wesley Chapel, FL asked in Probate for Puerto Rico

Q: my father has the beginning of dementia, his wife did a will on his behalf having him sign it making her the sole heir.

My father has 4 children, can we attest those documents. Can we hire a lawyer to get those document, the deed to the property/land and marriage certificate in order to mandate the correct heir to the house?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst
  • Probate Lawyer
  • Crossville, TN

A: It sounds like you want to contest the will in advance, before your father passes. That is very uncommon, the reason being that technically a will is not effective until death and can be changed any time up until then as long as the testator has capacity.

What you CAN do is hire an attorney to petition to have yourself appointed as conservator of your father's estate, and then once appointed you can petition the court to declare the will invalid (because he did not have capacity at the time it was made, but you would have to prove that). Then you might also try petitioning the court to allow you to create an estate plan for him, based upon substituted judgement, but my best guess is unless there are other compelling reasons (such as Medicaid planning for him or special needs planning for an heir) that the judge will say let's let him pass intestate (without a will).

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