Asked in Probate for California

Q: Why do heirs who are not mentioned in the will continue to receive notice of hearings from the court

I am one of two beneficiaries who are named in a will that is in probate. The will state's that the two beneficiaries and only them are to share the entire estate equally. One of the beneficiaries is also the executrix. Why is it that notices coming from the court pertaining to court hearings are sent out the the two beneficiaries as well as the two heirs. Does the court in any way imply that the heirs are entitled to a portion of the estate.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Shawna Murray
Shawna Murray
  • Probate Lawyer
  • Irvine, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: The heirs are receiving notice because California law requires that notice be given to the beneficiaries and heirs during the probate. The heirs may have a remote chance of inheriting, for example, if one or both of the beneficiaries were to die before the probate closed or if one or both of the beneficiaries "disclaimed" (declined to accept) their share of the estate. Reading the Will should help you clarify under what conditions the heirs might still inherit.

These are only a couple of examples of how an heir might end up inheriting instead of the named beneficiaries. Other examples include the heirs proving that the Will was signed when the testator was incapacitated or was under undue influence of the beneficiaries.

I hope this was helpful.

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