Five Steps to Address Disputes Over a Petition for Probate
As anyone who has experienced the probate process before knows, disputes over a petition for probate can arise very quickly among interested parties. Tensions are high and old conflicts often tend to resurface. These disputes over a petition for probate may occur as early on as the filing of the petition for probate, which initiates the probate proceedings. If a beneficiary or other interested party is disputing a petition that you prepared, there are steps that you can take in order to prevent the conflict from escalating further.
Helpful Steps to Take If a Beneficiary Is Disputing Your Petition for Probate
Upon receiving notice that the beneficiary has an issue with the petition for probate, consider taking the following actions:
- Contact an experienced estate litigation attorney right away. The faster that these disputes over a petition for probate are resolved, the less time and money you will spend.
- Determine exactly why the beneficiary is disputing the petition. Did you improperly list the beneficiaries? Was the form incomplete? There are many potential conflicts that can arise over this complex form.
- Consider filing an amendment to the petition for probate. If the beneficiary was right and the form was prepared incorrectly, it can generally be fixed. You will need to prepare the amendment in pleading format with a title that identifies the document that is being amended.
- If the dispute involves missing information on the petition for probate, consider filing a supplement. A supplement is used to add missing information that was not included in the original petition. It should be prepared in the same manner as an amendment.
- If the changes are substantial, it may make sense to completely re-do the petition for probate. It will still be filed as an amended petition, however. It is also important to note that a new notice may be need to be required for all interested parties, even if this notice was already provided when you originally filed the petition.
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