Regardless of the size of one’s estate and the holdings contained therein, having a comprehensive estate plan in place is critical in ensuring that a person’s final wishes are carried out as intended. When a sizable estate is involved in Colorado, it’s even more important. A will alone is almost certainly insufficient, and additional documents such as trusts and powers of attorney may be needed to create a complete plan and to prevent intra-family squabbling and attempts to change the outcome of the estate.
One such case is currently being contested in Colorado. Pat Bowlen, the owner of the Denver Broncos, recently passed away. He had established a trust to provide for the succession of control of the franchise that is worth over $2.5 billion. The validity of the trust is being challenged by his two daughters.
The estate plan was put in place about ten years ago, and the daughters have argued that their father was not mentally competent to sign the documents. He had been suffering from Alzheimer’s when he passed away at the age of 75. Included in the trust documents was a no-contest clause that stated anyone attempting to contest the trust would be disinherited.
Facing one’s mortality can be very difficult. The specter of a person’s family squabbling over the family estate after one passes can be very troubling. A family gathering in Colorado to discuss one’s final wishes, as indicated in a will and/or in trusts, can prevent a lot of heartache and bad blood from occurring at a time when a family should be free to grieve the loss of a loved one.