I have a high interest in the validity or lack of validity of will, trust and other estate planning and transfer documents including related mental capacity, undue influence, fraud, decedent or testator intent, document and wording interpretation, and elder abuse. These are issues or criteria that we very often see in will and trust disputes, and financial elder abuse. It’s not too difficult to find discussions in which the author defines undue influence in various legal terms or definitions, and in deed you can find similar discussions in my materials, including that the definitions have changed and are changing over time and that they also depend on the nature of the document or issue at hand including for example whether the document is a will or trust and the sophistication or complexity of the document and its contents. However, as a trial attorney dealing with evidence and expert witnesses the victim’s susceptibility to undue influence and whether or not the victim was in fact unduly influenced or unduly persuaded are equally or perhaps more interesting.
For example, there are many new articles being written about dementia and new findings about how early cognitive deficiencies are being found (i.e., much earlier that previously thought); however, a deeper look considers the extent to which the deficiency makes the person susceptible to undue influence and all of the factors that go into that evaluation. As I like to pass along to my readers worthwhile information and links written by other people, the following is a link that contains discussions about undue influence and susceptibility from a psychological perspective. I believe it is worthwhile reading. Click on the following link for the materials, CLICK HERE
And if you come across materials on these topics that you believe that I should read please do pass them along to me.
Thank you. Have a good weekend. Dave Tate, Esq. (San Francisco/California)