Most Recently Updated Sept. 18, 2017.
From Our “Ask a Question” mailbag: Camden County Will Challenge Caveat.
“My brother froze my mother’s will at the Camden County Surrogate’s Office. Mom divided her estate equally but put his share in trust. He says he is challenging the Will. I am the executor, but now I can’t file the will. What can I do?”
A Caveat Stops a Will From Being Filed.
First, let me clarify what has happened. Your brother has filed a Caveat with the Camden County Surrogate. By filing a Caveat, any interested party can prevent the Surrogate from immediately accepting a will and giving the executor the power to control the estate assets. When a Caveat exists, any will filed is then held, and the person who filed the Caveat is notified. In theory, the person who filed the Caveat will then go to the Camden County Surrogate’s office to review the will. If they wish to challenge the will, they will then proceed. If they do not wish to challenge the will, they will withdraw the caveat.
So, the will is not “frozen”, but instead it is being held for your brother’s examination.
Defending The Will as an Heir.
As an heir, you are the proponent of the Will. You seem confident that your brother will continue to challenge the Will. As such, your best option now is to retain an experienced Camden County Will Challenge lawyer. A Will Contest is a serious and complex matter. There are many options available, but the facts of your specific case will determine which path is best. Depending on your brother’s actions, as your attorney, we could file a petition to have the Will accepted despite the Caveat. Or, this will may move directly into a Will Contest. Either way, you will need some experienced advice moving forward.
Space here doesn’t allow me to give a great deal of detail. So, if you would like more information I encourage you to read my Article, Will Contests Explained for the Non-Lawyer: Everything You Need To Know.
Managing The Estate As Executor During a Will Contest.
Given your brother’s hostile stance to the will, I would also expect that he will be more likely to challenge any actions you take as executor. Remember, until you receive a release from all beneficiaries you will continue to be responsible for estate assets. Even if the Caveat matter can be resolved, you will likely need the advice of an experienced Camden County Probate Attorney to help you obtain your release from liability.
Camden County Will Challenge Caveat, Explained.
In conclusion, in this Post, I tried to explain the results of filing a Camden County Will Challenge caveat. Further, I included links to even more detailed information on my website. So, let me know how I did, comments and questions are welcome!
Furthermore, I would be happy to answer your questions. If you have any other matters for a Camden County Will Contest Attorney, feel free to contact our office for a free consultation. We try to make the process as painless as possible!
Wills, Trusts, Probate, and Estate Litigation, It’s All We Do!
Author, Peter Klenk, Esq.