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Gary B. Garland
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Gary Garland’s Answers

285 total


  • As a matter of law, is testimony offered to contradict an unambiguous article of an uncontested will admissible?

    An executor of a NJ will (who is also a beneficiary) lined up a lot of people willing to offer testimony that the testator did not intend what he clearly specified in one article of the will. He does not want to contest the rest of the will and it...

    Gary’s Answer

    hearsay is an out of court statement offered to prove the contents therein. there are hearsay exceptions including a declaration against interest.
    that said, it is my experience judges look beyond the 4 corners of the will - you have a fact based circumstance and need an experienced lawyer to litigate on your behalf.

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  • Can children challenge beneficiary? What is the % of success?

    Father deceased, mother remarried for 3 yrs with separate finances, homes ect. Mother paid for all expenses including paying monthly mortgage of house owned by new husband. less than 3 months before mothers dies of illness not shared with childre...

    Gary’s Answer

    Very fact sensitive. You should consult with an attorney who handles estate litigation.

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  • Is there a legal limit how much an executor can resist giving an accounting/closing an estate despite complaints against him?

    Articles on the subject of how to go about hiring a lawyer say that you should ask how many hours work similar cases have taken in the past. I have asked many estate litigation lawyers what is the upper limit of hours of work it takes to force an...

    Gary’s Answer

    how many motions will be required? how many responses? how long after the case is scheduled on the judge's calendar will the case be called? how long will the case take with the judge's law secretary or mediator? how many chances will the executor be given? what actual facts of wrongdoing or other basis for removal will there be?
    for that matter, how many hours is a divorce? how much is a car? you're asking for a finite number on a matter with a lot of variables - nobody who knows what they're doing can give you a reliable estimate. it would be closer to between a breadbox and the empire state building.

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  • How many hours work did you do to force the stubbornest executor you ever saw to provide an accounting and to close an estate?

    This is a question for experienced estate litigation specialists only.

    Gary’s Answer

    it takes...as many as it takes. I do know, however it takes 3 licks to get to the center of a tootsie roll pop. so based on that commercial, 3 hours. However, if there is litigation and delays, it could take far, far more. as the commercial says, "the world may never know."

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  • Can we purchase her house at full market value. Would this cause problems with acceptance into Medicaid

    My mother is 92 and running out of cash to pay for 24 hour in home healthcare She owns her home outright and we are now beginning to sign her up for Medicaid

    Gary’s Answer

    Medicaid will scrutinize the intra family sale but if it is arm's length it should pose no problem, however you then want to be smart about how you handle the sale proceeds. like most questions i answer, i suggest you consult with a competent elder law attorney.

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  • How many hours (minimum-maximum) might a lawyer work to get a resistant executor to make an accounting?

    I need a ballpark range estimate of how many hours' legal work may be necessary to do the following: 1) Force a resistant executor to provide an accounting of a large estate consisting only of accounts in financial institutions, without any real ...

    Gary’s Answer

    that's really not a fair question. Lincoln was asked how long a man's legs should be - and he responded, "I'd say long enough to reach the ground." - you added the word "resistant" - that can add many hours.

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  • What action needs to be taken against the Administrator, what is the process, and with whom? What are the statutes?

    Regarding Probate and Estate Administration. An administrator was assigned to my father's estate to act on my behalf (as Executrix) and in the best interest of the estate and the beneficiary (myself). The administrator neglected to provide monthl...

    Gary’s Answer

    you should consult with a competent attorney to review your issues and let you know your rights.

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  • Can I write the Judge a letter to reveal the fraud upon the court the executor committed or do I have to file a motion?

    I took the executor of my deceased mother's estate to court. I asked to compel an accounting, remove executor and revoke a Quit Claim deed that I signed under complete and utter duress.. We had our day in court at a hearing. He cried real tears...

    Gary’s Answer

    you can write the court and there's a chance the judge or his/her law secretary will read it and consider it. you mentioned you know it is best to talk to an attorney and you will - that will be your best course of action at this point - just make sure it is someone who concentrates on estate litigation. good luck!

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  • Two Dynasty Trusts dates are referenced which one is valid, how we copy of the later one?

    The beneficiaries have received the will and Dynasty Trust Documents. In the 2007 Will 4.1 Generation-Skipping Trust for Children and Descendants. (a) Upon my death, an amount equal to my available GST Exemption Amount (as defined in Section 4.1(b...

    Gary’s Answer

    you could be in a world of pain. was there in fact a 2007 trust? I think you'll need a competent attorney to review the documents AND ASSETS and sort this mess out.

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  • What is the process for handling her estate, and can we use the money in her bank acct for expenses related to her death?

    My mother has died without a will. She was widowed and my brother and I are the only children. I am a joint account holder on her checking and savings accounts.

    Gary’s Answer

    As with most of these types of questions I encourage you to seek a qualified attorney for help our advice

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