Florida law gives no legal effect to wills obtained by forgery and/or fraud. Section 732.5165 of the Florida Probate Code provides that any such wills procured by fraud, duress, mistake or undue influence are void.
Defeating a will procured by forgery is much more straight-forward than contesting a will based on undue influence, largely in part because forgery is much easier to prove in court. Effective use of a handwriting expert can establish a specific degree of certainty whether the signature on the will is, in fact, the signature of the testator. A handwriting expert conducts such an analysis by comparing other samples of the testator’s handwriting around the same time frame of the execution of the will.
In considering a will contest based on forgery, it is important to remember that a will signed by a person other than the testator may be a valid will, so long as it was signed in the testator’s presence and by the testator’s direction.