Keys to Avoid Estate Litigation in 2024

by | Dec 20, 2023

If you have ever experienced conflict after the passing of a loved one, you are not alone. Many people searching for a Colorado estate litigation lawyer have experienced how complex things can get, both before and during the probate process. At Axis Law Group, we believe the best tool to avoid estate litigation exists in estate planning.

Plan ahead

For anyone dealing with estate litigation in Colorado, the words “if only we had planned ahead” have probably been said more than a few times. If a loved one passes without any estate plan, the probate process in Colorado can be complex, even if conflict does not exist. However, death and money can cause more issues than anyone expects.

Planning ahead by creating an estate plan not only ensures the estate is dealt with properly, but it also can avoid lengthy and expensive court processes. Talking to an estate planning attorney can ensure you don’t have to talk to a probate attorney later. Whether you are creating your own estate plan or encouraging your loved ones to do so, planning ahead will solve conflicts.

Have a backup plan

Even after creating an estate plan, having a backup plan is crucial. “What if a beneficiary passes away?” “What if my personal representative or trustee cannot serve in that role?” If these “what ifs” and more are already incorporated into your estate plan, frustrating estate litigation can be avoided. Answering the hypothetical questions now will save time, money, and relationships down the road. Some of the most important backups include:

  • Backup beneficiaries – If a beneficiary dies, should the beneficiary’s children or descendants inherit that share? Or should someone else?
  • Backup decision makers – If someone is appointed as an agent to make decisions, what happens if that person chooses not to take on that responsibility? Have any backups been identified?
  • Backup distributions – If the estate plan gives an inheritance to a minor, what happens to that inheritance before the minor can legally inherit it? Is there any information on how the minor can ask for distributions? Does the estate plan explain who is in charge of the inheritance?

If answers to questions like these exist within an estate plan, the opportunities for conflict and estate litigation can be drastically limited. At Axis Law Group, our estate planning lawyers are equipped to offer advice and counsel on these sorts of questions. Our goal isn’t to leave loose ends – our goal is to create a secure estate plan in an understandable way.

Talk to your loved ones

Being transparent during estate planning can solve many unexpected (or expected) problems. Even if you answer every hypothetical question that could arise, if someone close to you feels blindsided by your estate plan, that can lead to conflict. While it is not usually required that you share your estate plan details with anyone, communicating your wishes and answering questions can alleviate the pressure of dealing with the passing of a loved one.

When searching for an estate law firm, it is important to make sure both legal and practical considerations are addressed. At Axis Law Group, we take time to get to know your needs and goals. Our planning process ensures that your wishes are explained in detail. On top of that, we also offer “family” or “helper” meetings. These meetings provide the opportunity for your loved ones to hear how your estate plan addresses the most important estate considerations. Rather than waiting until after someone passes away to answer questions, we can talk through questions and concerns while ensuring your wishes are honored.

When it comes down to it, predicting the future can be an impossible task. However, preventing conflict in the future should be a priority. By planning ahead, having a backup plan, and talking to your loved ones, avoiding estate litigation becomes more than possible.

Contact us today!

Are you wanting to talk more about creating your own estate plan? Or do you have a loved one who needs to learn more about estate planning? Whether you need to speak with a Colorado probate law firm or an estate attorney near you, Axis Law Group is here to help. Contact us today to set up a meeting with one of our experienced attorneys!