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Discourage a will challenge from the moment you create it

Creating a will now can help make life easier for your loved ones after you pass away. As you are creating the will, you need to think about what you can do that might help discourage them from contesting the will. You might not think that anyone will challenge it, but there is a always the chance that someone will do just that. There are several things you can do that might help ensure that your loved ones can get your estate handled as quickly as possible, which can mean less time and less money is spent on the process.

If you are concerned that someone might challenge the will, you can include a no-contest clause. This sets a penalty if someone challenges the will and loses that challenge. These clauses mean that if the challenge isn't successful, the person loses out on what he or she was going to get.

Ideally, you will create your will when you are healthy. There is a chance that the will could be contested if you aren't of sound mind and body. Creating the will now can also help ensure that you have it all in place before something does happen to you. This also gives you time to discuss the plan with the people who will need to know what is going on. They can ask questions now and get clarification, neither of which are possible when you aren't around to provide the necessary information.

Remember, a will is only one part of your estate plan. You can also use trusts to distribute assets how you want. This gives you more control than a will since you can set conditions on the trusts.

Source: The Balance, "5 Tips for Avoiding a Will Contest," Julie Garber, accessed Jan. 24, 2018

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