How do you file a will in probate if you only have a copy not the original

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How do you file a will in probate if you only have a copy not the original

I need to file a will in probate in Oconto WI Oconto County but I only have a
copy of the will and the lawyer that did the will is no longer in business.

Asked on June 1, 2017 under Estate Planning, Wisconsin

Answers:

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

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Under the laws of most states, it is presumed that if there is no original of a Will, the testator (i.e. the person who made the Will) destroyed it. And tearing it up or otherise destroying it is the legal way to revoke a Will. If no one saw the testator do this and an original Will cannot be produced for probate after the testator’s death, the law considers it a “rebuttable presumption” that it was revoked, even if there is a copy. However, a rebuttable presumption can be overcome but a hearing is generally required. At this point, you should consult directly with a local attorney who can best advise you further after hearing all of the details of the case.


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