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5 tips for working through probate disputes with family

After losing a loved one, strong emotions and extended periods of family time can spark rivalry and conflict. Probate disputes often pop up in these situations or in families that have long-standing conflicts.

Try a few of these peaceful ways you can resolve family conflicts to avoid probate disputes entirely or work through them more easily.

Recognize the root of the problem

Let’s say your sibling has disputed your inheritance of an asset you know is rightfully yours. Try to focus on why the issue is a problem for you and why the issue is a problem for your sibling, instead of blaming your sibling for upsetting you.

Do you feel upset because the item helps you feel connected to your loved one? Is your sibling upset because he or she no longer feels connected to the deceased relative? Recognize why you are struggling with not having this item and whether lamenting or compromising may be easier on both of you.

Keep your cool

The impact that the loss of a loved one may leave you or a family member in an irritable mood. If you are feeling like your emotions may be clouding your decision-making, take some time to calm down. Try separating yourself from your family members and practicing stress-relief activities.

Avoid ruminating

Avoid ruminating over a decision that you disagreed with. Ruminating is the act of continuously replaying the thought of a situation that makes you upset. If you find that you are fixated on an upsetting dispute with family, try to do some reading or deep breathing to refocus your mind in a different direction. This will help you let go of past events and move forward.

Try mediation

A third-party mediator may help you and your family work through probate disputes. Because the third party is not concerned with revenge for previous conflicts, each family member may have a better opportunity to rationally recover compensation that is appropriate to the situation at hand.

Contact an attorney

If a family member is dealing with probate proceedings in a hopelessly irrational, irresponsible or malicious manner, probate litigation may be necessary. If you believe the will of a loved one may not be valid or an executor is mismanaging trusts and assets, contact an attorney with a comprehensive understanding of probate court procedures. An attorney can help guide you through the legal options you may be able to pursue depending on the details of your probate dispute.

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