Contesting a Will in Germany
Contesting a Will in GermanyUpdated on Tuesday 24th May 2016
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There are several legal options through which a person can contest a will in Germany. As general rule, most of the wills are contested on the basis of the testator’s capacity to draw a testament. Our team of German lawyers can assist persons with legal advice, according to their specific situation.
Contesting a will under the basis of mental incapacity
Persons who are entitled to a share of the inheritance of a testator can contest the will if they have not been mentioned in the document; at the same time, they can contest the document if they haven’t received the minimum share to which they were entitled by the law. One of the basis through which this procedure can be performed is related to the mental capacity of the testator.
According to the provisions of the German Civil Law, a person who is considered to lack mental capacity is not allowed to draw a will. If he or she still performs the action, the will can’t be considered valid.
Some of the grounds related to this issue are represented by mental disorders, such as dementia or paranoia; our team of German attorneys can provide further details on this matter.
General reasons to contest a German will
The law prescribes numerous reasons to contest a will, a part of them referring to the capacity of the testator to perform this action, the validity of the document or the enforcement of the inheritance stipulations.
The most common ways to contest a will refer to:
• validity of the will – the document is not considered valid if there are irregularities referring to the way in which such act should be drafted;
• testamentary capacity – referring to the fact that the respective document may contain the wishes of the deceased person, but it is not a will, as prescribed by the local legislation;
• Inheritance Act – in the situation in which the document does not provide (even if it was written according to the testator’s wishes) the minimum requirements in terms of inheritance for specific members of the family, the document can be contested under the provisions of the inheritance law.
Persons who need further information on the way in which a will can be contested in Germany can address to our German law firm for assistance.