Chicago, IL asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Kansas

Q: My grandmother passed away two months ago. She had a will but we cannot find a copy, nor can we track down the attorney

What is our next step? We have tried phone, email & every social media option to find the attorney.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Scott C. Stockwell
Scott C. Stockwell
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Lawrence, KS
  • Licensed in Kansas

A: You should work with an attorney where your mother was living at the time the will was prepared. An attorney might have better luck knowing which attorneys to contact and have a chance to visit with those attorneys. There is a duty to make reasonable inquiry to locate the will, and your attorney could help you determine what those reasonable steps are so that the court may be informed.

If the terms of the will are known, it is possible to seek probate of a lost will. Typically, a lost will situation is when there is a copy of the document available. While there is a presumption that a lost will was revoked, it may be overcome by affirmative evidence. If there is no will and the terms are unknown specifically, but the family has some agreement, it is possible for all the heirs and potential legatees and deviseees to enter into a settlement agreement. Barring an agreement, the heirs at law are entitled to the net proceeds of the estate.

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