What can be done if a Will cannot be located?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

What can be done if a Will cannot be located?

I have a friend who passed away 2 weeks ago. He made out a Will in 2 years ago and left me everything, plus named me the executor. The problem is that I never received a copy of the Will and am not sure where it is. I am not family so his family is not helpful in any way and won’t allow me in the house to look for it. I have tried to contact a few lawyers in his area but no luck. He died suddenly so things are not in order. I just want to carry out his wishes and I keep hitting a brick wall. I also know the house was in a Trust and I do have a few bank names but they cannot give me any information. What can I do?

Asked on June 25, 2015 under Estate Planning, Illinois

Answers:

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

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your loss.  Generally speaking, when a Will is lost a copy can be authenticated and submitted for Probate with an affidavit as to its contents and the wishes of the decedent and the witness affidavits. Do you know who the witnesses were to the Will?  Could they be helpful in locating the attorney that drafted the Will and/or testify as to its contents and the wishes of the decedent, your friend? If not then you have no rights here and his family has all the control.  You would have to file an objection to probate when they begin the proceedings.  Good luck to you.  


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.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption