Important Undue Influence FAQs For Victims Who Had Their Inheritance Hijacked

A valid will or trust in Iowa must demonstrate that the author acted autonomously during the estate planning and execution stages. Sometimes, however, an individual close to the drafter may have intentionally or inadvertently displaced his/her desire to inherit over the author’s original intent to distribute assets equally among heirs. Such undue influence provides grounds for interested parties to contest …

Win Testamentary Capacity Will Challenges Through Evidence of a Testator’s Memory Loss

The law presumes you make your intentions evident when disposing your assets through a valid will or trust and that you possessed the requisite legal capacity to do so before executing such testamentary documents. When testators however lack testamentary capacity, undue influence sometimes follows which can adversely impact an heir’s rightful inheritance during probate. For this reason, the Iowa Supreme …

New Trends ln Probate Litigation: Iowa’s Rising Tortious Interference With Inheritance Claims

We’ve been hearing a lot of tortious interference with inheritance news coming from the Iowa Court of Appeals over the last three years—an indicator that this relatively unfamiliar area of estate law is trending. In 2019 alone, the Court ruled in six cases where beneficiaries had brought actionable claims after probate closed to hold wrongdoers responsible for intentionally looting their …

How A Brother’s Clever Procedural Maneuver Allowed Him To Collect Punitive Damages In Probate Court

Iowa’s trust and estate litigation attorneys are taking a second look at intentional interference with inheritance precedent law after the Iowa Court of Appeals recently upheld a million-dollar will challenge award that included $177K in punitive damages. In Re Estate of Bowman (2017), the Court affirmed two sisters hijacked their brother’s inheritance by unduly influencing their father to write him …