Legal Question in Wills and Trusts in Georgia

I took my Father to change his will at his request. The attorney asked that I step outside. I was told it was totally confidential and they had to know I was not influencing him in any way. I was ok with that since I did not know what was in his will to begin with. After I took him home, he asked me to read it to him. When I did, he said that it was not the way he wanted it done. I asked him did they not explain it to him and he said that it was just not the way he wanted it done. What can I do about this? I am afraid that if I take him back, they will think that I have tried to change his mind about the way it was done. I don't think that they have explained it where he could understand what it was saying. Is it legal for them to ask me to stay outside when I don't think they explain it to him correctly? Why could I not stay in the room to make sure he understood it?

Asked on 8/03/10, 1:44 pm

3 Answers from Attorneys

Scott Riddle Law Office of Scott B. Riddle, LLC

Your father can contact the lawyer and go back to make sure it complies with his wishes. That's it. If you get so concerned about your role, or how you are perceived, that it affects what you do, you ARE exerting your own influence for your own personal reasons.

Further, why on earth do you think it was not "legal" for them to ask you to step outside? It was not your lawyer, your will, or your office.

To be direct, you need to worry less about you and more about simply allowing your father to get a will done as he would like to have it done.

Read more
Answered on 8/08/10, 2:00 pm
Glen Ashman Ashman Law Office also dba Glen Ashman Attorney

The more you get involved the more likely it is that the will may get tossed by a court. So, as much you wish you could help, you hjave to stay out of it and not say anything. If your father wants to change the will he will call the lawyer. If he doesn't he won't.

The lawyer did exactly the right thing in keeping you out, and you have already overstepped the lines of undue influence wsith what you have done this far. You HAVE to stay out of it.

Read more
Answered on 8/08/10, 2:13 pm

The lawyer acted properly here to avoid any appearance of undue influence. This is your father's decision to make, not yours. If something is not right, then he needs to communicate that to the lawyer. Is there any chance that this just was not explained correctly and that your father misunderstood? It should be the lawyer who reviews the will and explains it to your father, not you. It is not your job to explain it.

I have some concerns here - it is unlikely that the lawyer got it so very wrong. How old is your father? What is his mental state? Does he have early dementia or Alzheimer's? If your father does have a mental issue, then he cannot be making a will at all, even if he was able to convince the lawyer that he was ok when he initally met with the lawyer.

Read more
Answered on 8/17/10, 12:05 pm

Related Questions & Answers

More Probate, Trusts, Wills & Estates questions and answers in Georgia