What options are available to force an executor to probate an estate?

My husband and my mother-in-law have both passed away in the last 4 months. Her estate was to be divided equally between both my husband and his sister-in law. I have read that any estate in NJ valued at more than $10,000 can be required to be probated. What are my options to require that the estate be probated and that any proceeds that would be inherited by my daughter’s would actually come to them?

Asked on October 9, 2011 under Estate Planning, New Jersey


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If your mother-in-law passed away with a Will within the last four (4) months and her estate has yet to have the probate process started, you can begin it as an interested party (even if you are not the executrix) if you have a copy of her Will.

If you do not have a copy of the Will of your late mother-in-law, you can start the process of closing out her estate by filing an intestacy proceeding as an interested party by filing a petition for such.

I recommend that you retain an attorney experienced in Wills and Trusts to begin the process of closing out your mother-in-law's estate either through a probate or an intestacy process.

Good luck.

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.