A Starting Point for a Will Contest is an Unnatural Disposition.

Robert Ray

When deciding whether to contest a will, one of the first things to look for is an unnatural disposition of the property. An unnatural disposition is one where a beneficiary of the will is not someone most people would think of as a natural object of the testator‘s bounty. As far back as the 1800s, Texas courts have ruled that an unnatural disposition is a circumstance that should arouse the suspicion and the strict scrutiny of the courts.

What is an unnatural disposition? If a testator has a wife and children, most people would think that they are the natural objects of his bounty. Even if he gives everything to the wife or the children or favors one child over another, that would not necessarily be unnatural. On the other hand, if one child was favored over the other children and the testator changed his will shortly before his death at a time when the favored child was controlling access to him, that would raise suspicions. And, of course, if he gave a large part of his estate to his barber, the nurse that cared for him shortly before his death, or a Las Vegas Showgirl, most people would be suspicious.

It may turn out that the explanation of the reasons for making the unnatural disposition is understandable. However, they would still cause suspicion in most people before learning of the reasons. If you know of a suspicious will, the time to take action is now. The longer you wait, the more difficult it becomes to correct the wrong.

Copyright by Robert Ray, a Texas inheritance attorney. The preceding information is general and does not apply to every fact situation. However, if you are concerned about inheritance laws or rights, have a family inheritance dispute, a property dispute, or want information about contesting a will and need an inheritance lawyer, we can help. Please go to our main site www.texasinheritance.com and use the contact form to contact us today. We are Texas inheritance lawyers and would love to learn about your case, and there is no fee for the initial consultation.


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The Author

Robert Ray

Robert Ray handles inheritance disputes of all kinds. He takes cases throughout Texas.
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