Mental health issues such as depression, anxiety and bipolar disorder can have a profound effect on the way people make decisions. While mild depression and anxiety can affect many of us, severe mental illness can mean that people are classed as mentally incompetent for the purposes of making legally recognized decisions.
This can be the case for the drafting of a will. If a person was suffering from mental illness when they drafted their will, it might be contested by loved ones after his or her passing. For example, if a child or spouse of the deceased person is excluded from their will, they may have reason to believe that they drafted their will without mental competence. Furthermore, they may even believe that another party exerted undue influence over the will-maker while they were in an unstable mental state.
How can I prove that the will-maker was suffering from a mental illness when they made their will?
In order to be able to show that the person making a will did not have the testamentary capacity to do so, evidence should be given in support of the theory that the will-maker did not know the consequences of his or her actions. It tends to be easier to prove this when the maker of the will was suffering from dementia or insanity, or when they were taking drugs. However, it is also possible when the will-maker suffered from other mental illnesses.
If you have lost a loved one who was suffering from a mental illness, you may want to challenge the will so that his or her true wishes are reflected.