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My father past away in April 2012. The attorney would wrote up the will is a personal friend and business partner with my

Marion, IL |

father. Nothing in the will was mentioned in the will or part of the Estate. is this a conflict of interest? What happens to the business they own?

Attorney Answers 3


Do you mean that this business wasn't mentioned in the Will? Generally beneficiaries of Wills can't act as witnesses or as scriveners (the drafters).

You need to take this Will to a reputable probate attorney ASAP for review.

Avvo doesn't pay us for these responses, and I'm not your lawyer just because I answer this question or respond to any follow-up comments. If you want to hire me, please contact me. Otherwise, please don't expect a further response. We need an actual written agreement to form an attorney-client relationship. I'm only licensed in CA and you shouldn't rely on this answer, since each state has different laws, each situation is fact specific, and it's impossible to evaluate a legal problem without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue.

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Your fact summary is not clear, but I assume that you meant to say that the business is not dealt with in the Will. This is not necessarily a problem, because Wills often do not mention specific assets.

What you need to determine is how the business interest is owned, and whether or not your father's share of the business will need to pass through probate. The lawyer should be a good source of information on this, and it would be quite natural for you to have questions, so the lawyer is the first person I would call.

I would ask:
1) How is the business owned?
2) What kind of business is it? Is it a corporation? An LLC? A partnership?
3) Is there a buy-sell agreement in place? What happens to your father's share as a result of his death?

That will get you started. If you are not comfortable with the answers, then you should immediately seek counsel from another lawyer. You will need to know the answers to determine whether probate is necessary. Who is named as personal representative/executor in the Will? That person is the one who would need to open an estate, if one is necessary.

There are many fine probate lawyers who are active avvo participants. You can click "find a lawyer" below and enter "probate" and your city, to find someone in your area.

James Frederick

*** LEGAL DISCLAIMER I am licensed to practice law in the State of Michigan and have offices in Wayne and Ingham Counties. My practice is focused in the areas of estate planning and probate administration. I am ethically required to state that the above answer does not create an attorney/client relationship. These responses should be considered general legal education and are intended to provide general information about the question asked. Frequently, the question does not include important facts that, if known, could significantly change the answer. Information provided on this site should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney that practices in your state. The law changes frequently and varies from state to state. If I refer to your state's laws, you should not rely on what I say; I just did a quick Internet search and found something that looked relevant that I hoped you would find helpful. You should verify and confirm any information provided with an attorney licensed in your state.

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The will most likely says "all my real and personal property" shall be distributed as follows-
That would include any interest in his business interests.
The personal representative can chose whatever attorney they want to assist and advise.

The answer given does not imply that an attorney-client relationship has been established and your best course of action is to have legal representation in this matter.

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