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Can you change a will after someone passes away?

On Behalf of | Mar 16, 2021 | Probate Litigation |

If someone you love passes away, you may want to do all you can to fulfill their final wishes. However, there are times when their will won’t make you happy, and if you and others in your family feel the same way, then you may want to change it.

Unfortunately, it’s not possible to change a will without contesting it. If you and all of the other beneficiaries agree to the changes you’re seeking, a judge may agree with you. Otherwise, you will need strong evidence to support your request for changes.

Intestate succession laws apply when no will is present

If your loved one’s will is invalidated for one reason or another, the estate may then fall under the intestate succession laws. These laws determine who will inherit property based on specific situations. For example:

  • If you are their spouse and they have no siblings, children or parents, then you’ll inherit the entire estate
  • If you and your spouse have children, then you will receive your spouse’s share of your community property, but separate property and a share of property following usufruct will go to your children

These are just two examples of how the estate could be split. There are many different divisions that may apply depending on who is still living in the family.

What can you do if there is a will but you’re unhappy with the division of assets?

Depending on the reason you’re unhappy about the division of assets, there are a couple things you can do. If you want to pass on some assets to a different party, you may be able to relinquish your right to a share of your inheritance and pass them on to another individual. If you’re looking to get a greater portion of the assets left behind, then you may need to contest the will with the assistance of your attorney. If intestate succession laws apply but you’re unhappy with the division, you may also want to bring evidence to court to show why you want a portion of assets that are not necessarily designated for you.