How soon after a person dies must their Will be entered into probate?

UPDATED: Aug 26, 2011

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

UPDATED: Aug 26, 2011Fact Checked

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

How soon after a person dies must their Will be entered into probate?

My mother died last week in FL; I am in PA. Her husband said there is a Will but mom told him that it couldn’t be read until he dies (current age 72). How do I validate what her husband said? How do I get access to the Will?

Asked on August 26, 2011 Pennsylvania


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your loss.  Some states do have laws about Wills being offered for probate within a certain time frame but more likely than not there is not set date in your state.  If the Will is offered way after someone passes away the courts tend to request an affidavit as to why it was never probated before.  But this request sounds quite odd.  Although I am sure that her husband is grieving as well, not letting you see the Will is odd, to say the least.  As is the request.  It is possible, remember, that all her assets passed to her husband as joint tenant with rights of survivorship when she passed away.  Once that occurs then they are his to do with as he pleases.  So I think that you should consider hiring an attorney to inquire about the Will and to ask about a probate proceeding.  You may need to force his hand and apply to be appointed as the Administrator of her estate (for someone who dies without a Will) in Florida.  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 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.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption