Think Before Challenging an Estate Plan
The first reaction that most people have when they learn that they have been cut out of a deceased relative's estate plan is to want to fight. It's an understandable reaction and it is natural to be angry about not receiving an inheritance that you feel entitled to receive. However, it is best to take some time to think about what you stand to gain from a challenge to the estate plan before you start the fight.
That would have been a useful thing for Katherine Jackson to do. You might have heard that she is challenging Michael Jackson's Will because she does stand to receive anything from it. At this point it's unclear what she thinks she can gain. If Michael's Will is declared invalid, he has older Wills that the court can use. They do not leave her anything either. If you know the laws of Intestate Succession, then you also know that Katherine Jackson will not receive an inheritance from Michael even if all of his Wills are invalid. His children will get everything.
It is not often that you can learn a valuable life lesson from the Jackson family, but this time you can. Do not challenge an estate plan if you can't actually gain anything from the challenge.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Richard Schneider
Experienced estate planning attorneys Portland OR of the Law Offices of Richard B. Schneider LLC offers estate planning and business planning resources to residents of Portland OR.
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Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer. For specific technical or legal advice on the information provided and related topics, please contact the author.