about an old will

my father made a will befor he died how can i get that will

Asked on March 29, 2019 under Estate Planning, Kansas


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

The fact is that sometimes people can deposit their Will for safekeeping with the probate court; it is then formally filed upon the death of the testator (this is the person who made the Will). Many people, including lawyers, don’t know you can do this. For example in NY, it costs $45 to do this. 

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

Wills are not filed in advance, before the person dies, since they only take effect on death. Therefore, it will not be in the court's records unless someone has already begun probating it. If no one has, you should look in his papers (e.g. wherever he kept bills and legal papers), talk to his attorney(s) and accountant(s) if you know who they are, ask his siblings (if any) or close friends--in short, look in all logical places he may have kept it, and ask all the logical people who may know of it. It may be, however, that you never find it, if it is lost, and you will need to manage and distribute his "estate" (what he left behind) based on your state's rules for "intestate succession" (who gets what when there is no will).

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.