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Your Advocates

Contesting a Trust in Fort Myers

Can You Contest a Trust in Florida?

Since a trust often involves significant assets, the terms of a trust are vulnerable to contests by interested parties. Are you a beneficiary or trustee that wants to contest a trust? At Your Advocates, we understand how to handle a trust contest and we stand ready to represent beneficiaries or trustees in the court process.

When you come to our Fort Myers probate attorneys, you will immediately benefit from our personalized service and tailored legal representation. Our mission is to deliver superior service and ensure the satisfaction of our clients. Whether you are a beneficiary or a trustee, your case is important to us and we won't take your situation lightly.

Contact Your Advocates for the trustworthy representation you need!

Process of Contesting a Trust in Fort Myers

When a trust is created, the trust involves three parties:

  1. The grantor or settlor who creates the trust
  2. The trustee who manages the trust assets for the benefit of the beneficiaries
  3. The beneficiary

When a settlor creates a trust, it must be created while they are mentally competent and free from duress or undue influence. In effect, two common grounds for contesting a trust include:

  • Claims that the settlor was mentally incompetent
  • Claims that the settlor was subjected to undue influence by someone capable of swaying the settlor's decisions

Such claims assert that the trust document does not represent the decedent's actual wishes.

Additional grounds for contesting a trust, include:

  • The trust document does not satisfy state requirements
  • The document's language is unclear and ambiguous
  • Doubt exists over its authenticity

In any case, the burden of proof is always upon the plaintiff who is challenging the trust document. The plaintiff must present clear evidence that convinces the court that the document is defective.

Contact a Fort Myers Lawyer

Often, a trust contest is introduced by someone who is eligible to inherit the decedent's property under the state's intestate succession laws, but who is not a beneficiary of the trust. Intestate succession laws determine how property is distributed in the absence of a will.

If an individual convinces the court to invalidate a trust, the state must distribute the trust property in accordance with Florida's intestate succession laws, rather than according to the terms of the trust. To learn more about trust contests and how Your Advocates can help you, call our Fort Myers lawyers today.

We would be glad to discuss your case in a free consultation. Give us a call today at (239) 970-6844. If you are an AARP member, we can provide you with a special discount.

Meet Our Attorneys

  • William M. Powell, Esq.
    William M. Powell, Esq. Partner
  • Rita M. Jackman
    Rita M. Jackman Partner
  • Adam J. Stevens
    Adam J. Stevens Partner
  • Richard M. Ricciardi, Jr.
    Richard M. Ricciardi, Jr. Partner
  • William M. Powell, Esq. Partner
    William M. Powell, Esq.

    Although William M. Powell, Esq. is well-versed in a variety of legal matters and case types, he has built a strong reputation through his focus on personal injury and medical malpractice cases. Your Advocates are proud to have him as a member of our law firm. He shares our passion for helping people in need and prioritizes our clients’ needs. Read More

  • Rita M. Jackman Partner
    Rita M. Jackman

    Ms. Jackman’s unwavering ambition and leadership has provided clients and will provide her future clients a star in this profession. Ms. Jackman is a relentless researcher and preparer who handles her client tasks with a tremendous amount of preparation and thought. Ms. Jackman was born and raised in Cape Coral, Florida which has worked to benefits her practice and the clients that she serves. Read More

  • Adam J. Stevens Partner
    Adam J. Stevens

    Mr. Stevens has found his niche by becoming a litigation attorney and understands that communication between an attorney and client are paramount to obtaining favorable results. Mr. Stevens is known for taking on any and all types of cases no matter how difficult or routine they may be. Mr. Stevens is known as an aggressive attorney, though at the same time understands that some cases require a more patience to ensure a favorable result. Mr. Stevens does not shy away from challenging legal issues and has litigated complex matters against municipalities, international unions, large banking institutions, and several insurance companies. Read More

  • Richard M. Ricciardi, Jr. Partner
    Richard M. Ricciardi, Jr.

    His experience in litigation provides him the ability to identify and isolate potential areas of conflict and effectively counsel clients around potential pitfalls. Mr. Ricciardi believes that proper estate planning, real estate counsel, and business planning are areas of importance to everyone. Protecting and dispensing clients' various interests, assets, and lifetime earnings can make the difference between a comfortable retirement and wasting thousands of dollars in assets and earnings. Specialized knowledge, experience and attention to detail in these areas is therefore critically important. Read More

How We're Different:

  • Dedicated & caring service
  • Over 70 years' combined experience
  • One-on-one attention
  • Customized strategies
  • Accessible - 24 hour response time
  • El abogado habla español