If a family member wants to contest the validity of a will in New York, there are certain factors to take into account. One can contest the validity of a Last Will and Testament as to the testamentary capacity of the testator (individual signing the will) and whether certain formalities were followed to ensure valid execution. For example, a validly executed will must be witnessed by two (2) non-interested parties who must see the testator sign the will in their presence. Testamentary capacity is a common basis to contest to the validity of a will, and whether the testator was capable of signing a will, or if the testator signed the will under duress or undue influence. If a family member was not named in the Will, they might be entitled to challenge the validity of a will. Any individual who would be entitled to a share of the decedent’s estate had the individual not validly executed a will (i.e. intestate share) must be served with notice that the will shall be offered for probate. However, if a decedent passed away and left a surviving spouse with children, only those individuals could challenge the validity of the will. In this instance, they (and any other beneficiaries named in the will) would be the only persons with standing to challenge the will. Therefore, in the scenario presented, a sibling or a first cousin of a decedent not named in the will would not have standing to challenge the validity of the will. If you have a question and would like more information as to how to contest a Last Will and Testament, please contact a Long Islandestate litigation attorney at the Law Offices of Michael W. Alpert at (631) 225-4603 or firstname.lastname@example.org.