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My brother is executor of my father estate and refuses to probate or even show me the will--what can I do?

Vero Beach, FL |

I was not notified of the death-when I found out about it -My brother told me their was no will--then when pressed & I did investigation -there is a will and I am named as a beneficiary-My brother refuses to allow me to see the will and refuses to probate the estate-what can I do??

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Attorney answers 7


Under Florida law, the custodian of an original will his supposed to deposit the will with the clerk's office within 10 days of the custodian finding out about the death. If the custodian of the will does not deposit the will, you can file a petition to compel the custodian to produce and deposit the will.
You will need to hire a qualified probate attorney to help you.

The answer provided to the question does not constitute legal advice or establish an attorney-client relationship.


Ms. Campbell is correct. I would advise that you should contact a local attorney that will sit down and explain your options. Many attorneys here in Indian River County will provide you a free consultation to explain your options.

J. Garry Rooney
Attorney at Law
Rooney & Rooney, P.A.
2145 14th Avenue, Suite 20
Vero Beach, FL 32960
(772) 778 5400
(772) 778 5290 (fax)


As is the case in almost all states the person with the will can be compelled to produce it and deposit it. You need a lawyer.

This is not legal advice nor intended to create an attorney-client relationship. The information provided here is informational in nature only. This attorney may not be licensed in the jurisdiction which you have a question about so the answer could be only general in nature.


Since you are an interested party, you can hire a probate attorney to initiate probate proceedings and compel the production of the will. Good luck.

My answer is of a general nature and should not be construed to be legal advice nor creating an attorney-client relationship. Carol Johnson Law Firm, P.A. practices in the area of Wills, Trusts, and Estates, Disability - with a particular focus on providing Special Needs Trusts for disabled children and adults.


Have a probate attorney write a demand letter to file the will-he could be held in contempt if he doesn't file.
You could choose to start a probate proceeding without a will which could also force the filing and put you in a position to ask that you be appointed personal representative.

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.


If there is a will, it must be filed within 10 days if there is any probate property. You know there is a will and you are named a beneficiary. What needs to be determined is what was left to you and is it still available? As a result, you may want to meet with a probate litigation attorney to petition the court and determine if the matter is worth pursuing.

This response only reflects my personal views in my individual capacity. It does not necessarily represent the views of my law firm and is not sponsored or endorsed by them. The case-specific information contained in this response is based solely on opinion, and is provided only for educational purposes and is not intended to provide specific legal advice.


The prior answers are correct. I think, if your brother is refusing to provide you with information about the estate, you might want seek to be appointed the personal representative, if you qualify. This can require a fair amount of work on the part of the personal representative, but the PR can be modestly compensated out of estate proceeds. I would only add that you might want to consider whether your father has any property to be probated, this is more of a practical issues and you can discuss this with the attorney you consult. As mentioned lawyers will often provide a free consultation.

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