Do children of the deceased have a right to view the will and who oversees the executor to make sure he carries out the will?

Lisa (Guest) on Sunday, September 16 2012, 08:41 AM
My mother died last week in Massachusetts. My brother is the executor who refuses to give any information to his sisters. Do the sisters have the legal right to see the will? Do we need a lawyer to view the will? Can we go to probate court and ask to see a copy of the will and see the death certificate? Who oversees my brother to make sure that he appropriately carries out what the will states and disperses any money equally or as the will states to his other siblings? If we wish to contest the will, what is the time period it has to be filed within?
1 response Add Yours
       
  •  
    Replied by Attorney Alan Fanger on Monday, September 17 2012, 08:55 AM · Hide · #1
    I am sorry about your loss. Under Massachusetts law, a will is required to be published in the probate court in which the decedent was “domiciled” (as of his or her death) within 30 days of the date of death. Shortly after publication of the will all heirs at law (usually spouses and children) are required to be sent a notice of both the probate proceeding and the requested appointment of the executor nominated by the will. That notice provides a date by which you or your attorney must file an “appearance”. This date is critical; if you do not file a notice of appearance by that date, you lose the ability to contest either the nomination of executor or the validity of the will. The notice of appearance is nothing more than a document with the name of the court, the case number and a title “Notice of Appearance” and stating that you are appearing in the matter. There is then a second and even more critical deadline. That deadline is the date by which you must file what is known as an “affidavit of objections”. The affidavit must be filed no later than 30 days after you file the notice of appearance. In the affidavit of objections, you are required to state under oath all of the reasons why you believe the will is invalid and/or the executor should not be appointed. These could range from lack of mental capacity to undue influence or even forgery to, in the case of executor appointment, a prior conviction of a crime involving fraud or theft. I highly recommend that you consult with an attorney at least for the preparation of this affidavit (which must contain certain “magical” language), if not for the filing of the appearance.
Your Response
Please login first in order for you to submit comments

Top Massachusetts Attorneys Ready To Answer Your Questions

1
Attorney Stephen Morte
Attorney Stephen Morte
Divorce, Criminal Defense, Personal Injury
2
Attorney Austin Joyce
Attorney Austin Joyce
Trial & Litigation, Personal Injury
3
Attorney Joseph Leone
Attorney Joseph Leone
Divorce, Criminal Defense, Family Law
4
Attorney Michael Akerson
Attorney Michael Akerson
Business Law, Employment Law, Trial & Litigation
5
Attorney Craig Ciechanowski
Attorney Craig Ciechanowski
Business Law, Trial & Litigation, Real Estate
6
Attorney Jack Merrill
Attorney Jack Merrill
Employment Law
7
Attorney Bruce Watson
Attorney Bruce Watson
Divorce, Criminal Defense
8
Attorney Chesley Oriel
Attorney Chesley Oriel
Business Law, Real Estate
9
Attorney Kenneth Simmons
Attorney Kenneth Simmons
Estate Planning, Elder Law
10
Attorney Liam Floyd
Attorney Liam Floyd
Trial & Litigation, Personal Injury
11
Attorney Tracy Fischer
Attorney Tracy Fischer
Divorce, Family Law, Mediation
12
Attorney Damian Riddle
Attorney Damian Riddle
Criminal Defense, Family Law, Drunk Driving
13
Attorney David Rubin
Attorney David Rubin
Divorce, Personal Injury
14
Attorney Bill Keller
Attorney Bill Keller
Real Estate, Personal Injury
15
Attorney Ann Trehub
Attorney Ann Trehub
Personal Injury
16
Attorney Howard Goldman
Attorney Howard Goldman
Business Law, Trial & Litigation, Real Estate
17
Attorney Amy Beth Baron
Attorney Amy Beth Baron
Divorce, Family Law, Mediation
18
Attorney Cameron Pease
Attorney Cameron Pease
Business Law, Trial & Litigation, Real Estate
19
Attorney Larry Krasnow
Attorney Larry Krasnow
Trial & Litigation, Personal Injury, Elder Law
20
Attorney Steven Houde
Attorney Steven Houde
Personal Injury