How effective are no-contest clauses in California?

No-contest clauses are intended to discourage beneficiaries from challenging your Will or Trust, but how effective are they? 

Practically speaking, the laws that limited the enforceability of no-contest clauses in California greatly reduced their usefulness as a drafting tool. Consequently, the ability to discourage litigation through the use of no-contest clauses has been hampered. 

In cases where no-contest clauses are utilized, it's important to remember that an heir who is excluded entirely from your estate essentially has "nothing to lose," so including such a provision may not affect their motivation to challenge your Will or Trust.