Posts tagged "Probate Litigation"
Californians who die without wills may have their estates probated after they die. As the death of Texas tycoon James Cotter demonstrates, the probate process may be very complex and heavily litigated when people leave behind large estates without wills.
When a California resident dies without a will, the process of settling their estate can get complicated. However, it is possible that the individual actually had a will and neglected to tell anyone about it. Even if an estate owner never mentioned a will, there could still be one saved on a computer or located in a filing cabinet.
When an individual passes away in California or any other state, his or her estate may be subject to probate. This can happen if a person dies with or without a valid will. If a person does have a valid will, assets will be distributed according to its instructions. Regardless of how a person dies, a personal representative will be appointed, and a person may choose his or her representative in a will.
After a person in California dies, their estate enters probate, the process by which their property is transferred after death. Probate collects property, ensures debts are paid from the estate and then sees that the property is distributed according to the wishes of the person who passed away. This is possible if the person has enshrined their wishes in a written document, most frequently a will.
Dealing with probate issues after the death of a loved one can be a difficult time for many families and individuals. However, this may be exacerbated when the situation is complicated by disputes over inheritances and other estate matters. A number of reasons can spawn estate litigation to deal with challenges and questions that emerge after a person's death.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.