People who want to start an estate dispute often just think about the legal and financial side of the case. Can they afford it? Do they have grounds to challenge the will? Do they have reason to believe it’s unfair or inaccurate? How can they prove that they are correct if other heirs counter their claims?
It’s important to ask these questions, of course, but experts note that you also need to consider the emotional side of the case. It can take a toll. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t challenge when it’s the right thing to do, but you need to prepare yourself.
For instance, the dispute likely pits you against your siblings. Maybe you feel that the inheritance isn’t fair. They do think it is fair. You see this as you fighting for what is just. They see it as you being greedy. They’re going to view you that way and portray you that way in court. It’s not always easy to handle.
You may also have to deal with behavior you never expected from them. They may lie about you, about their parents or about their own actions. They may accuse you of things that you never did. You may feel insulted and attacked. They may misrepresent the things you did or said, or they may accuse you of things that you cannot understand.
Estate disputes are unlike other lawsuits because, when family members are involved, they often create rifts that are hard to heal. If you do want to take on one of these cases, be sure you prepare yourself for everything that it means as you look into your legal rights.