If you have been wrongly disinherited by your close relative or you strongly believe that your deceased relative’s will was made under undue influence, speak to an experienced Lindon Utah probate lawyer. Probate Law has provisions to challenge a will. All wills must go through probate. When an application for probate is made, it is open for interested parties to challenge the will. It’s at this time that you should challenge the will. There is no point in challenging the will when your relative is alive. In fact you cannot challenge the will at that stage. A will becomes operative only on the death of the testator – the person making the will. If your relative is still alive, you are better off talking to the relative rather than challenging the will in court. There is a time for everything and the time to challenge a will is when it goes through probate. If there is a probate dispute in Lindon, the court will generally order the parties to try and resolve the dispute thorough probate mediation. Speak to an experienced Lindon Utah probate lawyer to know more about the mediation process.
If you are selecting a mediator for your probate dispute, speak to an experienced Lindon Utah attorney. In general, because the very nature of the work is dealing with interpersonal disputes, the mediator first of all must be comfortable with conflict. This is not to say that he or she must enjoy conflict, since it is commonly known that mediators are often conflict-avoidant in their own lives. However, they must enjoy the challenges inherent in managing and helping to resolve the conflicts of others. Whether mediating is motivated by a subconscious attempt to overcome one’s own aversion to conflict by managing the conflict of others, or by an attraction to interpersonal intensity, or simply by the joy of achieving resolution and helping people, the fact remains that effective mediators must comfortably embrace conflict.
In addition to being able to manage interpersonal conflict, an effective mediator style requires that the mediator have the personal capacity to tolerate and contain ambiguity and unpredictability. Because most probate mediations have much emotionality, both in the origins of the disputes and in the negotiations leading to resolution, the process, as it unfolds, is neither clear nor linear in its progress. At any time, it can suddenly flare with hostilities, escalate to the point of impasse, or resolve peacefully. As such, the mediator must personally serve as a container for the parties unpredictable emotions and actions. As with the ability to comfortably manage conflict, this ability to tolerate and contain ambiguity for the parties is very important for a mediator. Those who tend to become too anxious with ambiguity do not fare well as a family mediator.
Frequently, the position or utterances of one or both of the parties can trigger emotional responses on the part of the mediator. Issues arise in family disputes that touch every person on some level. The mediator is confronted with a broad range of emotional triggers, from the pain of children and parents going through probate to neglectful, destructive parental beliefs and practices. To maintain effectiveness, the mediator must have the capacity to keep such reactions in check and remain nonjudgmental regarding such content. This requires the mediator to be aware of, and reasonably resolved about, his or her own familial issues and personal values, which can readily be aroused during the course of family mediation.
Because of the often intense, emotionally driven, compelling stories that each party typically tells the mediator, it is quite easy to get swallowed up in the perspective of only one side of the dispute. Those whose style allows them to resist such pull have the capacity to consistently maintain a systems view of the dispute (that there are no right or wrong perspectives, no good or bad people, only functional balances of multiple and conflicting realities). They also have the capacity to remain calm and poised amid flying allegations, and the ability to empathize with and fully appreciate the point of view of each person involved in the dispute. Successful mediators need to “maintain professional detachment.” Again, it is important for a mediator to “look for the good in people,” which allows the parties to feel validated, regardless of their particular points of view on a given matter.
Mediators must also be able to rigorously maintain balance between the parties. Although some suggest that this means maintaining neutrality, others clarify that, because the mediator must lean on one party at some times and then on the other at another time during the mediation process, it is balance, rather than neutrality, that is the more accurate organizing principle. So, over some unit of time the mediator must equalize, or balance, the emphasis of the interventions between the parties.
The importance of empathy and good listening skills as a mediator cannot be overemphasized. This capacity for being able to understand and connect with the feelings of others is a skill that, according to research, lies on a continuum.
understand and feel what other people are feeling and to read the emotions of others, by both verbal and nonverbal cues, is crucial for an effective mediator. It cannot easily be taught but is invaluable in facilitating helpful communications in mediation.
An important coquality to empathy and good listening skills is patience. It is very important that the mediator be comfortable with letting clients proceed at the pace of the one needing most time to process. Mediators who are impatient with clients tend to hurry things along, often missing important opportunities for empathy and listening, and creating tension in one or both clients—tension that can build into resentment toward the mediator. Mediation clients (or more often just one of them) may negotiate in a tortuously slow way, or else make demands for quick results when they don’t know what to do, both of which put pressure on the mediator. If a mediator cannot remain patient and proceed in a responsive but optimal pace, mediation is bound to fail. An effective mediator must have the ability to wait, and even to sit with silence, if the clients need to process the content slowly.
Although it may seem obvious, being trustworthy is also an important quality for a mediator to have. Trustworthiness includes being organized, responsible, responsive, following through on promises and commitments, being truthful and accurate in reporting information, and admitting ignorance when that is the truth. Being trustworthy allows clients to reveal essential information, knowing that such revelations will not be used against them nor used to make them feel badly about themselves. It gives implicit permission for clients to count on the mediator to help resolve their disputes in as honest, effective, and efficient a manner as possible. It establishes confidence in the mediator’s effectiveness and fosters full and safe participation in the mediation process.
Effective mediators must also have the skill of refraining well practiced and on automatic pilot. Being able to relabel and reconceptualize a point uttered by one party so that it is palatable to the other party is basic to mediation work. Such a skill is not only inherent within the empathy necessary to simultaneously address the needs of both parties, but it even goes beyond. When the parties are stuck in their perspectives, it is essential for the mediator to be able to spontaneously generate a new point of view that both parties may be able to embrace. Such new and alternative realities frequently lead to the resolution of an impasse.
Lastly, it is essential for a mediator to have well-developed skills for thinking and intervening strategically. A mediator must read people quickly and be able to influence them directly and indirectly by his or her own words, intonations, and body language.
Probate mediation begins with an initial informational meeting held the mediator and the parties to discuss mediation and how it works. If the parties agree to go on with mediation, the mediator supplies them with the information necessary to start the mediation. The parties are given certain forms to complete along with other information on how to be best prepared for the first working session. Although different mediation settlements require more time than others to achieve, generally 4 to 10 sessions (each session lasting a couple of hours) is the average range of time needed to mediate most probates. When mediation process ends, the mediator gives the parties a memorandum of the decisions and other documents necessary for the probate to be concluded. They take the memorandum to their attorneys to have it converted into the probate document for their signatures. The terms of the probate papers prepared by the attorney will follow agreements memorialized in the mediator’s memorandum of agreement.
The initial consultation is a face-to-face meeting between the parties and the mediator that usually lasts about an hour. Prior to beginning the consultation, the husband and wife each completes an intake questionnaire. The questionnaire contains some background questions about them, their addresses, phone numbers, work status and position, marriage date, separation date, names and ages of children, whether or not they have been in counseling, names of attorneys, and each person’s area of greatest concern about the probate. The intake questionnaire includes a self-report, about the level of domestic abuse present in the marriage relationship, which is completed separately by each spouse to be shown only to the mediator and never shared with the other spouse. This information is reviewed by the mediator before seeing the clients. If the information raises questions for the mediator about violence or abusive dynamics in their relationship, the mediator may choose to meet with them separately to discuss past abuse and safety issues. If the information does not indicate a history of physical or verbal abuse, the mediator will begin by seeing them together after reading their intake forms.
It is standard practice for mediators to talk about their credentials, experience, and personal approach to probate mediation at this first meeting and to invite any questions about the mediator’s background, competence, or potential conflicts of interest. The mediator will provide a general explanation of mediation and describe how it works in probate. The mediator also explains the difference between mediation and the adversarial process as applied to the three major areas of decision making in the probate: parenting children, financial support, and division of marital assets and liabilities. By emphasizing the clients’ connectedness and mutual needs, the mediator demonstrates that the parties are not limited to the adversarial approach. Because mediation is conducted in private between the mediator and the parties, it is governed by a contract between the three of them. The contract governing mediation will likely spell out:
• Confidentiality rules regarding communications made during the sessions,
• Exceptions to confidentiality for child abuse and threats to do harm to self or others,
• Agreement to fully disclose all information necessary to making informed decisions,
• The role of the mediator as administrator of the process, use of experts, and role of attorneys,
• Expectations of each client,
• Steps to be taken in the mediation process.
The mediator’s goal in the initial consultation is to have an interactive discussion with them so they have the opportunity to have all of their questions answered and have sufficient information to make a choice about whether they will litigate, negotiate through their lawyers, or mediate their probate dispute.
Probate is the process by which legal title of property is transferred from the decedent’s estate to the beneficiaries. If there is a Will, the probate court will determine if the Will is valid. In the absence of a Will, the probate court appoints a person to receive all claims against the estate, pay creditors and then distribute all remaining property in accordance with the provincial laws. This process of obtaining court certification is known as probate. The cost of probate is set by provincial law. It is generally a percentage of the value of the estate. There ways you can legally avoid or minimize the cost of probate. To know how you can ensure that your estate passes on to the ones you really want and without having to probate your will, speak to an experienced Lindon Utah probate lawyer.
Lindon Utah Probate Lawyer Free Consultation
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States
Telephone: (801) 676-5506