How can we see the will? 9 Answers as of November 15, 2011

We believe there is foul play. The father in law was basically senile. But to our surprise, my sister in law has the will. I suspect no one else will get a penny. How much are the fees to hire an attorney to get a copy of the will? She refuses to file the will with the state.

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Charles M. Schiff, Attorney at Law
Charles M. Schiff, Attorney at Law | Charles M. Schiff
Make a written demand to your sister that she deliver the Will to the appropriate court. This should be the court of the jurisdiction the decedent resided in at time of death. If she continues to refuse, you will need to seek the Order of that Court requiring that she deliver the Will. I cannot tell you what an attorney would be likely to charge for this service. Every attorney determines his/her own fee structure.
Answer Applies to: Minnesota
Replied: 11/15/2011
Paul Nidich, Attorney at law
Paul Nidich, Attorney at law | Paul Nidich
It is a crime to fail to file a will for probate. I couldn't guess what any particular attorney would charge. You should hire an attorney in the county where the mother resided at the time of her death.
Answer Applies to: Ohio
Replied: 11/15/2011
Ashman Law Office
Ashman Law Office | Glen Edward Ashman
If you suspect something is wrong, you go hire a lawyer and sue her. If you sit on your hands and don't, nothing happens.
Answer Applies to: Georgia
Replied: 11/15/2011
Minor, Bandonis and Haggerty, P.C.
Minor, Bandonis and Haggerty, P.C. | Brian Haggerty
If sister-in-law never presents the will to the court to probate it, then it doesn't do anything and it can say what it wants. In order to be effective to transfer anything, the will has to be brought into court. It is much more likely that sister-in-law will use joint ownership of assets, and not a will, to bypass this process. If you suspect foul play, get a lawyer started on this.
Answer Applies to: Oregon
Replied: 11/14/2011
Martin Barnes - Attorney at Law
Martin Barnes - Attorney at Law | Martin Barnes
You should seek the advice and assistance of an attorney. When you meet with an attorney, you can request an explanation of fees. A person who has custody of a decedent's will must deliver that will to the court at the request of the personal representative named in the will or upon an order by the court. If the person who is believed to have custody of a decedent's will fails to deliver it, the personal representative named in the will or any interested person may apply for a court order to produce the will. The application for an order to produce a will must allege that the person named has possession of the will. The application must be written and verified. A person who fails to obey a court order to produce a will is guilty of contempt and is subject to penalty.
Answer Applies to: Indiana
Replied: 11/14/2011
    Harville-Stein Law Offices, LLC
    Harville-Stein Law Offices, LLC | Dean D. Stein
    Alabama law provides that someone in possession Of a will must probate it or make it available to someone who will probate it. You need to consult specific attorneys regarding their fee to commence this work.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 11/14/2011
    THE BROOME LAW FIRM, LLC
    THE BROOME LAW FIRM, LLC | Barry D. Broome
    Notify the Probate Court in the county where the deceased lived and request the filing. Give them the address and name of the person who has the Will.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 11/14/2011
    Goldsmith & Guymon
    Goldsmith & Guymon | Dara Goldsmith
    By statute in Nevada, she has 30 days to deposit the Will with the clerk of the court. A certified letter advising her of the same, retaining a copy would be a good first step. To file a petition to have her show cause why she has not filed the Will, will have a failing fee associated with it and probably three hours of attorney's fees. Thus an estimate of $1200 to $1500 would probably be in the ballpark.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 11/14/2011
    Law Office of J. Brian Thomas
    Law Office of J. Brian Thomas | J. Brian Thomas
    In Texas, an interested person can petition the appropriate probate court to compel a person in possession of a Will to deposit the document with the County Clerk. The costs associated with doing so will vary by attorney, but the amount of time involved to achieve this is not substantial. Of course, having the Will deposited only brings it to light. If, as you suspect, there are reasons to believe that the document is not genuine or does not reflect the true intentions of the decedent, you can expect quite a fight. Probate litigation, like anything else, can become very expensive very quickly. Many attorneys handle matters like this on an hourly rate basis, while others may take the case on a contingency arrangement. Visit with a probate attorney near you now, as the issue will not resolve itself in your favor.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 11/14/2011
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