A friend's step father passed away. He had a will and his daughter was named executor. She hired a probate attorney. My friend is now residing in dad's home as there are renters and the sister doesn't live here. In the will the father wants the house and possessions sold and split between all the children. However, shortly before his death he hand wrote something stating he wanted my friend to have everything and the house. He signed the document and it was witnessed and signed by a nurse. It wasn't notarized. No one knows about this other document. He hasn't mentioned it because he thinks it's invalid because its not notarized but he felt bad because they were left out and wanted to share. Problem being, everyone is now getting greedy and are trying to screw my friend. For instance the attorney hired by the sister told my friend she needed $400. She didn't say what it was for. He thought it was a filing fee yet nothing has been filed with the probate clerk. She kept demanding more money after that. I told him not to give her anything else. The daughter needs to pay that or taken out of the estate?
Your friend needs to visit a probate lawyer, If the document he has is a valid will he needs to honor his fathers wishes, He can give his sister whatever he wants but he needs to probate the proper will. He does not need to give his sister money to probate the other will.
Your friend needs to have the document reviewed by a probate lawyer. It may qualify as a holographic will. She should not delay in having the document examined by a lawyer.
She should look for lawyers with a high Avvo Rating™, and/or a high Martindale Hubbell Legal Directory Peer Review Rating™ (at http://lawyers.com).
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I agree with the statements orovided by the other lawyers here. As a friend, encourage your friend to invest in hiring a good probate lawyer to help him sort out the best way to work with his sister to settle his father's last wishes. it is not greed for his sister to follow what the will says to do, it is her job as the executor. Perhaps she does not have the personal funds to cover the initial probate costs. Have your friend communicate with his sister and make peace now that their father has passed.
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Your friend needs to take the document to his own probate lawyer TODAY to determine whether it is a valid holographic will.
His lawyer should advise him on making payments.
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