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Things To Know About Contesting A Trust In Florida


For many people, trusts make up an important part of estate plans. Trusts have many benefits, including helping your beneficiaries avoid probate court, while also protecting assets for your heirs. Unfortunately, creating a trust does not guarantee that they will work in the way they were intended. Issues can arise and they typically require the help of a Florida estate and trust litigation lawyer. Below, one of our experienced attorneys outlines what you need to know to contest a trust, or if your trust is being challenged.

Reasons to Contest a Trust 

There are several reasons a person may contest a trust. The most common of these are as follows:

  • The grantor’s lack of mental capacity: The person who creates a trust is known as the grantor and they must have proper mental capacity to draft and sign this legal document. To contest a trust on the ground of lack of capacity, one must show that the grantor did not understand the terms of the trust, who would benefit from it, or what property was going into it. Prescription medications and illnesses such as dementia often cause a lack of mental capacity.
  • Undue influence: Undue influence refers to when a grantor is threatened, coerced, or under duress when creating or signing a trust.
  • Improper execution: The trust code in Florida dictates how trusts are to be executed. For example, all trusts must be signed by the grantor and two witnesses. Any type of improper execution can result in a trust being contested.
  • Mismanagement: Trustees have a fiduciary duty to act according to the terms of the trust and the grantor’s wishes. If they do not, a trust can be contested.

Who Can Contest a Trust? 

Only people who have trust standing can contest a trust in Florida. To have standing, one must prove that they have a direct interest in the trust, a previous trust, the grantor, or the trustee. Typically, people who have trust standing are relatives of the grantor and individuals who were named in previous trusts.

Process of Contesting a Trust 

The first step when contesting a trust is to speak to a Florida estate and trust litigation lawyer. A lawyer can help you file a lawsuit, which is the first official step.

Like most other lawsuits, the two parties can settle out of court without the need to go to court. This takes a great deal of negotiation, which is also when a lawyer’s extensive experience is very valuable. If the two parties cannot reach a settlement agreement, they will have to go to court so a judge can resolve the issues. In court, both parties can present evidence to prove why a trust should or should not be deemed void.

Our Estate and Trust Litigation Lawyer in Florida Can Help with Your Case 

Whether you want to contest a trust or defend a challenge against one, our Florida estate and trust litigation lawyer can help. At Legacy Protection Lawyers, LLP, our experienced attorneys can help you navigate the process and prove your case so you obtain the best outcome possible. Call us now at 727-471-5868 or contact us online to request a consultation with one of our skilled attorneys.



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