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How should you handle unusual provisions in your will?

On Behalf of | Sep 6, 2022 | Trusts, Wills |

You should not have to worry that your last will and testament will become the subject of a court battle. Unfortunately, some families decide that a will does not truly reflect the wishes of the relative who wrote it and contest the will in court. This may happen if the will contains provisions that appear unusual.

To help ensure a court has no reason to think your will is suspicious, it may benefit you to understand how unnatural bequests work and how to deal with the appearance of them.

The definition of unnatural bequests

CNBC explains that an unnatural bequest is a provision in a will that conveys an inheritance to unusual beneficiaries. While a will commonly names children, a spouse or other close kin as heirs, it is not typical to designate people who are not family to receive an inheritance.

Sometimes relatives understand why a person may give an inheritance to a close friend, perhaps a caretaker who offered substantial help in someone’s final years. However, if family members are not familiar with the person named, they may choose to contest the will on the grounds of undue influence or that the testator made an error.

Consider explaining unusual provisions

If you know giving an inheritance to a non-relative could draw suspicion from your family, you might clarify your reasons for making the bequest in your will. You could add a statement saying that your friend is someone close to you and has performed acts of kindness and support for you over the years.

Such a statement might defuse concerns about your will. Even if it does not prevent a will contest, your written words may still carry weight in a court battle.

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