For instance, the will is read, no one is allowed to fight about who gets what, or no one gets anything.
I'm not sure that wills are 'read' like most TV shows depict. In Louisiana there is no requirement, as I suspect there isn't in most states.
The second matter -- not fighting or no one gets anything -- would be called an in terrorem clause. It's meant to put fear into someone who may inherit under the will to keep them from challenging the will. Again, I can only comment on Louisiana and speculate about other state law. In Louisiana, our case law is just now being developed. The particular clause you mention -- if anyone fights, no one gets anything -- has been held to be invalid here in Louisiana. Just because X challenges it, doesn't mean Y and Z should be left out in the cold. I understand case law here to say that you could say if X challenges it, X is out and his portion goes to Y. In other states, the case law or even codified law may be much better developed and clear. In Louisiana, it just isn't.
This post was edited on 11/21 at 7:25 am