Penn Valley, CA asked in Elder Law, Contracts and Probate for California

Q: how to defend yourself from wrongdul allegations of undue influence fin. elder abuse,quiet title and cancel deed,

and rescission of will? I have proof with declarations to support my where abouts and reciepts to show where anymoney went. and the deceased left a will i didnt know about untill after his death. I transfered property by affdavit.

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2 Lawyer Answers
James L. Arrasmith
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
  • Probate Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: To defend yourself against wrongful allegations of undue influence, financial elder abuse, quiet title, deed cancellation, and rescission of a will under California law, consider the following steps:

1. Gather evidence: Collect all relevant documents, such as the deceased's will, property deeds, financial records, receipts, and any other evidence that supports your case. The declarations and receipts you mentioned will be crucial in proving your innocence.

2. Hire an attorney: Seek the assistance of an experienced probate and estate planning attorney who can guide you through the legal process and help you build a strong defense.

3. Respond to the allegations: If a lawsuit has been filed against you, your attorney will help you prepare a formal response to the allegations, presenting your evidence and arguments.

4. Prove lack of undue influence: To counter allegations of undue influence, demonstrate that the deceased acted independently and of their own free will when making decisions regarding their estate. Provide evidence of their mental capacity and independence during the relevant time period.

5. Justify financial transactions: Use your receipts and financial records to prove that any money you received or spent was legitimate and not a result of financial elder abuse.

6. Defend the validity of the will: If the deceased left a valid will, your attorney can argue that the will should be upheld and that the property transfer through affidavit was in accordance with the deceased's wishes.

7. Prove rightful ownership: In response to quiet title and deed cancellation claims, present evidence that supports your rightful ownership of the property in question, such as the affidavit you mentioned.

Remember that the burden of proof lies with the accuser to prove the allegations against you. By presenting strong evidence and arguments in your defense, you can work towards protecting your rights and interests.

It is essential to work closely with a qualified attorney who can provide you with personalized legal advice and representation based on the specific details of your case.

Delaram Keshvarian
Delaram Keshvarian
  • Orange, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: Thank you for your question!

The underlying cause of action action against you is "Undue Influence." Quiet title, cancellation of deed, and rescission of will are remedies sight of the liability in the underlying cause of action is proven.

Sometimes attorneys argue that the remedy requested for this cause of action is not proper. But, here it seemed that your main fight is over the existence of "Undue influence."

Undue Influence:

when 1. the caregiver has an opportunity to influence the dependant person; 2. the caregiver takes advantage of this opportunity; 3. the aggrieved party relied on the other party and this reliance was justified (e.g., there was a caregiver-dependent relationship); and 4. the aggrieved party is induced to enter into the transaction that he would not if he was not under such an influence, there is Undue Influence.

The burden of proof is on the person who is challenging the will. The challenging part is to prove the existence of the Undue influence with Clear and convincing" evidence. After, the challenging part meets this requirement, the burger of proof shifts to the defendant.

The defendant can negate or weaken the existence of elements of Undue Influence.

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