If you are involved in a dispute regarding the distribution of assets under a will, known as a "will contest," you want an experienced attorney to protect your rights. Whether you are the executor, administrator or personal representative, or you are an heir or potential heir challenging the will, you want a lawyer who understands the law and process, one who has successfully helped others in similar situations.
Portland Oregon probate estate lawyer Andrew Rich has for more than 30 years successfully represented probate estate clients having will contest issues including a beneficiary challenging a will, a will's content dispute, will fraud, will mistake, diseased lack of capacity, will misrepresentation, undue influence or will duress and improper will legal formalities in Portland Oregon and Hillsboro Oregon .
Title 12, Chapters 111 to 118, of the Oregon Revised Statutes (ORS) contains the state's laws regarding wills and the probate process. You must be at least 18 years old and of sound mind to make a will. You must record your will in writing, sign it and have two witnesses sign the document. Having a beneficiary of the will act as a witness does not invalidate the document. In general, you contest a will by filing a petition with the probate court. The petition explains who you are and why you are challenging the will.
Mr. Rich will guide you through the process to establish that you have standing in the matter and valid grounds for contesting the will.
Mr. Rich will first of all determine if your claim is supportable with evidence that you have legal standing to challenge the will. To prove that you have legal standing will require that you have a legitimate connection to the will.
Mr. Rich will determine whether the will has a "no contest" clause and, if it does, how it might affect you. A no-contest clause, also known as an "in terrorem" clause, is valid under Oregon law. A no-contest clause may provide that anyone who contests the will forfeits the right to inherit under the will.
It will then be necessary to determine whether your reason for contesting the will is sufficient for finding the will invalid. Oregon law provides only three grounds for contesting a will:
Your "petition to contest" needs to be filed within the time period required by Oregon law.
Mr. Rich will protect your rights in litigation involving a challenge to a will. For an appointment call him at 503-985-6933.