The overall presence of all suspicious circumstances is enough to challenge a Will by the Court itself. Certain factors like a shaky and unclear signature, a fragile or uncertain mind of the testator, unlawful disposition of property, wrongful dismissal of legal heirs, and the active involvement of the other major beneficiary in the execution of the WIll as well, are indications of suspicious circumstances. However, the Supreme Court concluded that the mere presence of this cannot generally presume a Will invalid, but it does prove it dubious.
Read Part-I here.
Key Takeaways From Kavita Kanvar Case:
To avoid such a scenario, precautionary measures can be taken, such as
- Executing a will following the law is the first necessary step to ensure that it will not be contested later.
- We often see challenges due to the mental capacity of the testator at the time of the execution of the will. It may be considered to obtain an aptitude test from a doctor before the execution of the will. In addition, to clarify any doubts, you can also consider videotaping the execution process.
- A key conclusion from the Kavita Kanwar case is that witnesses must be reliable and preferably known to the deceased. The common relationship between the testator and the faithful witnesses is also a consideration for the courts when deciding whether a will contains suspicious circumstances.
- Although a will does not have to be registered, the registration of a will is useful in proving its authenticity.
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