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What if my Uncle forgot about us in his will? He names our half brother & he forgot about us...

Olympia, WA |

...he only had 4 family members left & we know he just forgot about us...can anytyhing be done?

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Attorney answers 4


How do you know this? If this was an oversight it was a pretty big one. You could ask the attorney who drafted the will if this was a mistake but you have a tough case here. The will as drafted is probably controlling unless you can somehow prove with convincing evidence and proof that it was an oversight. Get with an estate litigation attorney to directly discuss the facts and possibilities of overturning the will. Be prepared for a long and costly fight with no favorable outcome guaranteed.

Hope this helps.

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If your uncle "forgot" about family members, it sounds like he may have been in no mental state to write a will.

As the above answerer implies, proving a testator's mental state at the time of making a will is very difficult. But if you're on good terms with the half brother and other beneficiaries of the will, try getting them to agree that your uncle was incompetent. You'd still have to petition to revoke the will, but it'd be an easier time of it.

You'd also be faced with this problem: assuming the testator was incompetent, the best you can hope for is a revocation of the will. This would mean that either your uncle's previous will would control, or - assuming he had no previous will - that he died intestate. In intestacy, nieces and nephews usually don't receive property if there is a spouse, child, sibling, or parent of the testator still alive.

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The other possibility is that the uncle did not forget about you but in fact did not want to give you anything. In WA, except for a spouse and minor children, a person is not required by law to make any provision for anyone, even biological family members, in his will.

How was your relationship with the uncle while he was living? If you ignored him and had a bad relationship with him, perhaps he did not forget. If you had a good relationship and he mentioned many times his desire to leave something to you, you can check with your attorney whether there is any claim that the uncle was not mentally competent when he signed his will.

You need to act quickly if you want to challenge the will. There is only a short time to do so.

You should promptly review the specific facts with your attorney to find out your legal options.


When you say your Uncle forgot about you in his Will - do you mean he did not identify you as family or he did not provide for you to take any assets? To answer your question properly, an attorney would need to see the Will and fully understand your family line of surviving kinship. Bear in mind that if you have a right to contest his Will, you must do it within 4 months of the date the Will is admitted to Probate or you will be barred from bringing any claim.

My answer does not create an attorney-client relationship and is not to be considered a legal opinion. It is only a general answer to a general question.