A will is a document which acts as commanding document for management of the estate of a deceased person. But to make a will effective one must probate it before the court of law. The appointed executor of the will is the person who has the responsibility to undertake the process of probate.

Under the probate proceedings only it is decided by the court whether the will is a genuine will or a forged piece of document. The burden of proof lies on the propounder who has initiated the probate proceedings. It is the propounder who has to clear all the doubts on the will.

First thing first the propounder has to show that the will is executed in the following manner.

  • That the will is executed in the sound mind of the deceased during his lifetime.
  • Out of two attesting witness one must dispose that the will was duly executed without undue force or coercion.

After satisfying the basic requirements now propounder has to satisfy the suspicion which court considers that a reasonable doubt is there which makes a will as a not genuine piece of paper here are the few suspected grounds-:

  1. Suspicious circumstance in context of will means such circumstances which prima facie make one to feel that despite execution and attestation the testator under normal circumstances would not have bequeathed his property in a way purported to have made.

An example to this is if the deceased has bequeathed his property to a complete stranger instead of legal heirs.

  1. The propounder is himself the beneficiary and there are no attesting witnesses to confirm the will executed without undue influence/coercion.
  2. Testator died within days of executing the will.
  3. Testator suffering from mental ailment which could prevent his from forming free will.
  4. Delay in execution of the will.
  5. Existence of will never contended in previous proceedings.

Factors which doesn’t raise suspicion.

  1. Exclusion of some of the legal heirs
  2. Attesting witness does not know content of the will.
  3. Nothing to show testator was in good mental condition.
  4. Profounder witnesses made minor contradictory statements.
  5. Thumb impression of testator instead of signature.
  6. Thumb impression of testator at various places.
  7. Scribe did not appear in the witness box.

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By Adv. Nitish Banka
B.E LLB(HONS)
9891549997
Practicing Advocate District and High courts in Delhi/NCR