Back to the Learning Center

By: Scott Grossman on September 14th, 2016

Starting Probate without a Will

“Can I start a probate in California without a will?”

There are a few different situations in which this might come up.  Generally, when a person dies and they had a will, whoever has the original will files it with the clerk of the court in the county where the decedent (person who died) lived.  The person who has the original will must file it within 30 days.

What if the person who has the will is sitting on their hands, refusing to share information, and refusing to file the will with the court?

Nobody can tie your hands in this way.  You don’t have to simply wait indefinitely for the will to be filed.

You can open probate and provide proper notice to all parties including the person who has the original will.  Your probate petition alleges that your loved one died without a will (intestate.)

Then, the person who has the original will can respond to the probate petition by producing the will, where it will be filed with the clerk of the court.

Once the person who has the original will produces it and it is filed, then the terms of the will are carried out according to your loved one’s wishes.

If you are ready to start your case, then please give us a call or fill out our Get Help Now form.  If you want a comprehensive overview of California Probate, then click here. Should you have additional questions about trust litigation, then you will find plenty of useful information in our Learning Center.