Can a Bad TrusteeLose it All?

The ever confusing Trust and Will no-contest clause is continually being used and abused in California Trust and Will lawsuits. The irony is that a beneficiary is rarely, if ever, disinherited under a no-contest clause any more because the law is favorably skewed to prevent forfeiture. In other words, no-contest clauses simply do

In January 2010, California once again changed the law of No-Contest clauses in an attempt to make the area easy to apply.  Hard to say if that goal was accomplished.  In this video we discuss some of the basics of California No-Contest clauses.  For those viewing this blog by email subscription, you can click on

The omnipresent no-contest clause (originally called in terrorum clauses–as in to terrify one’s beneficiaries) is meant to prevent lawsuits. The idea being that if a beneficiary contests a California Will or Trust containing the clause, then that beneficiary is entirely disinherited and loses his gift under the document (see our previous blog post on how

No contest clauses were originally referred to as “In Terrorem” clauses. In Terrorem is Latin for “To Scare the Pants off my Beneficiaries”—loosely translated. And that’s what a no contest clause is supposed to do, prevent a trust or will contest by disinheriting a beneficiary who dares to contest the terms of the instrument.