Many people are uncertain about what happens to their property and assets after death. In Florida, contestation of a will by individuals who believe they should receive portions of an estate when they should not is typical. The law determines the specific types of individuals entitled to a will.
Who is eligible
Interested parties in probate litigation include all of the beneficiaries listed in a will. According to estate laws, immediate family members, including spouses and children, are automatically entitled to the decedent’s estate, whether they are beneficiaries or not.
If the spouse or children are unavailable, the estate reverts to the decedent’s parents, siblings or other relatives. Another group of interested parties includes the individuals listed under a previous will. These names include creditors and other beneficiaries that are not members of the family.
Contesting the will
The decedent’s immediate family members and the listed beneficiaries are entitled to challenge the will’s validity. In Florida, a will is invalid if the testator creates the will due to fraud, duress or while under the influence of a substance. In addition, the testator must possess a proper mental capacity to make a will. However, a will is still valid regardless of a fundamental error or typo.
Due to Florida’s laws, a deceased’s assets cannot go to just anyone who knew the deceased. The beneficiaries listed in a will have the right to challenge its validity in probate litigation. Under the state’s inheritance laws, the heirs have the right to receive portions of the will and oversee the probate process in court.