My grandmother owned land in PA - will never probated - now what

we only have a copy of her will - will never probated - she left everything to her one daughter and the other daughter was never a part of her life - now this daughter's sons say that accordining to PA law they get half - my grandmother moved to NY and so did her one daughter who was named in the will cannot find original will - lawyer is dead and cannot find his paperwork and both daughters are dead - leaving me the granddaughter who live in NY to fight for the land. The sons say that since the will was not probated - they get half

Pleasantville, NY -

Attorney Answers (3)

Theodore W. Robinson

Theodore W. Robinson

Criminal Defense Attorney - Hempstead, NY

I agree with Mr. Fromm's answer. You need to seek estate counsel in PA who can advise you appropriately.

It would appear that if no Will is located, then the Estate must be done by an Administration, which then could put the sons in line of succession to some degree, depending upon a number of variables, which is why you need to consult with an attorney soon.

Good luck.

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Steven J. Fromm

Steven J. Fromm

Probate Attorney - Philadelphia, PA

If there is no will then the assets will pass by the laws of intestacy in the state where the decedent resided at her death. You would be well served to speak with an estates attorney to know what to do and protect your inheritance. You cannot handle this on your own and without a will the sons may have a valid legal position.

Hope this helps.

Please remember to designate a best answer to your question.

Mr. Fromm is licensed to practice law throughout the state of PA with offices in Philadelphia and Montgomery Counties. He is authorized to handle IRS matters throughout the United States. His phone number is 215-735-2336 or his email address is , his website for more tax, estate and business articles is and his blog is

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Maryellen Sullivan

Maryellen Sullivan

Probate Attorney - Freeport, ME

Most states also have a limited number of years by which you need to have a Will probated. Maine, for example, is three. If the land is in NY, NY law applies. If a Will isn't probated within the required time, intestacy law applies. If your grandmother died without a spouse or parents, her estate generally goes to her children. If children died after grandmother, then their Wills apply as to who gets their interest. If children died before grandmother, then their share goes to their children. As you can see, this can get very complicated. You will need to involved the probate court. Good luck.

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