If a parent doesn’t designate at least $1.00 for each living child, can they contest their parent’s Will?

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If a parent doesn’t designate at least $1.00 for each living child, can they contest their parent’s Will?

Asked on May 22, 2014 under Estate Planning, Tennessee

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

I am assuming that what has happened is that a child was not mentioned in the Will.  Understand that in Tennessee you can exclude your child from inheriting in your estate but you need to do so in a certain manner.  By not mentioning a child at all there becomes an inference that he may not have been of sound mind to make the Will.  There is an assumption that a Testator knowns "the object of their bounty" or who has a legal right to inherit their estate.  If that person is omitted from mention then there could be a valid challenge to the Will.  Leaving a dollar is a way to say "I know who the objects of my bounty are and I am only leaving them this much of my estate." Seek help.  Good luck.


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