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Probate Litigation Archives

Probate litigation can pursue claims against an estate

After a person passes away in California, his or her estate will enter into the probate process, where claims against the estate are handled. Probate claims can arise for any number of reasons from inheritance disputes to late wills that may have been executed due to undue influence by a beneficiary. Creditors of the deceased individual may also have a reason to file a claim once that person's estate has entered probate.

Several claims filed for probate of Charles Manson's estate

A California courtroom is the site of a battle over the estate of the late Charles Manson. Manson, who died in 2017 after spending almost five decades in prison, was notorious for his involvement in the murder of nine people.

Unsealing of Harper Lee's will reveals little new information

California fans of the work of the late author Harper Lee may be aware that in keeping with the private life she led, her will was also made private. However, on Feb. 27, following a lawsuit from The New York Times, the will was unsealed.

Family in battle with Yahoo over email account

A 42-year-old man died intestate in 2006 after a motorcycle crash. He had a Yahoo email account that he had created and shared with his brother. When his surviving siblings sued for full access to the account, Yahoo was initially granted a summary judgment. Now, the Supreme Court may make a ruling in the case, and its decision could have an impact on California residents.

Lawsuits related to James Brown's estate continue

A lawsuit filed in a California federal court in January is one of over a dozen dealing with the disputed estate of the singer James Brown, who died in 2006. Brown's will left around $2 million worth of effects to the six children he acknowledged as belonging to him, $2 million to his grandchildren to be used as scholarships, and most of the rest of the estate to the I Feel Good Trust, which was established by Brown to give scholarships to children in Georgia and South Carolina. Unfortunately, none of his beneficiaries have received that money.

3 parties making claims upon estate of Charles Manson

The late Charles Manson, who died at age 83 after decades in prison for orchestrating the deaths of nine people, continues to demand attention from the California legal system. A judge in Los Angeles must now evaluate competing legal claims for Manson's estate. The judge must determine the legitimacy of at least two wills attributed to Manson and three people presenting themselves as heirs.

Challenging wills can get complicated

Challenging a will can be a daunting task, but California residents that believe they have a valid claim may be able to successfully contest a will. Nationwide, 99 percent of all wills pass through probate without problems arising. Probate courts generally stick pretty closely to what the will says since it represents the last wishes of the deceased person.

Family sues to block grandson's inheritance

In California and around the country, inheritance disputes sometimes arise after people die. Family members may file lawsuits to prevent people from inheriting from estates if they believe that the people caused the deaths. In a case that was filed in New Hampshire, a man's aunts are suing to try to prevent him from inheriting money from his grandfather's estate because his aunts believe that he killed his grandfather and his mother so that he could inherit the money.

How to do probate right in California

After a person dies in California, it may be necessary for the will to go through probate. If that is the case, the custodian of the will has 30 days from a person's passing to present an original copy to the probate court clerk's office. The executor of the estate should also receive a copy.

Understanding inheritance theft

As much as we'd like to think that our heirs and survivors will come together in grief after we're gone, that isn't always the case. Family in-fighting, resentment, anger, greed, and old "scores to settle" often rear their ugly heads in the aftermath - or just before - a loved one's death.

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