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What does it mean when an estate is in litigation?

Anaheim, CA |

I am demanding that my fathers estate be divided fairly my brother thinks other. A partition to partition and to render has been filed there is no will what so ever. Since live in CA and the estate is in MA I feel that my brother is trying to fight me all the way to court

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Attorney answers 5


Litigation is a dispute that goes to court. That's what happens when somebody files a petition. Apparently your brother hired a lawyer and now you need one, too, in MA where the estate is. If there was no Will the rules to divide an intestate estate are pretty black and white. I suggest you try to work out a fair deal (with legal advice and representation) before litigation costs eat up both of your inheritances.

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It means the probate process is not going smoothly and you need to hire probate counsel in Massachusetts to help you defend your position and as attorney Brophy said, see if there's a way to resolve this amicably.

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It basically means you are fighting in court about how to deal with/divide up the estate. What is "fair" is subjective. There is a statute that says how the estate is divided when there is no will...but people can always argue about issues or things like how to "cut a house in half." You need an attorney in MA.

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Because there is a difference of opinion on how to divide the estate, then you must have a court decide it. That is litigation and why you are in litigation. This has to be handled in MA as that is where the estate is and that is why you can't do it in CA. Get legal assistance in MA.


If your father died a resident of Massachusetts and left no will, the Massachusetts law of intestate succession determines how the estate will be divided. Additional law may modify this if either you or your brother have valid claims against the estate. I suggest that you get a consultation with a Massachusetts probate lawyer, either for free or pay for a consult, to learn your rights and your brother's rights. The law may be fairly black and white as to how this should be resolved. Since I don't practice in Massachusetts I am not looking for your business, but I do believe that spending a half hour or maybe less with a Massachusetts probate lawyer will help you learn your rights.