Clarkston, MI asked in Probate for Michigan

Q: After Proof of Service for Informal probate has been mailed. Can you hire a different lawyer instead. Nothing filed yet.

After Proof of Service for Informal probate has been mailed. Can you hire a different lawyer instead. Nothing filed yet.

After Proof of Service for Informal probate and appointment of PR, notice intent request informal appt PR were mailed out. 14 days is not here yet, nothing filed yet. Can you hire a different attorney instead? If so, does another notice need to be filed again, waiting another 14 days? No communication from the attorney, no return calls or emails. The proof of service notice was suppose to be mailed 09/02, it was finally mailed 09/09.

Kalamazoo, MI

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1 Lawyer Answer
Kenneth V Zichi
Kenneth V Zichi
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Fowlerville, MI
  • Licensed in Michigan

A: Your 'next steps' probably depend on the retainer agreement you signed.

Yes, you CAN always change lawyers, but bear in mind:

1) You're complaining about a (less than) one week delay in mailing paperwork,

2) Nothing CAN be done during that 14 day waiting period, and then the paperwork (which I assume is already done?) can be filed to open the estate. So nothing can be done until the 23rd at this point. Is your attorney out of town, ill, in a trial or otherwise not available? These things happen! You're not 'losing time' -- this just takes time.

I'm not sure what communication or return calls you're expecting but given that you likely have already prepared all the initial paperwork, and it is 'waiting' until it is ripe to file. What exactly are you expecting at this point?

The Probate process requires filing a series of documents, and a LOT of 'waiting' time when deadlines run and time-lines play out and while it appears that nothing much is happening, it is a built in part of the system. If you have questions about those time lines, when you are in to sign the next tier of documents (the notices after probate has begun) ASK you attorney.

If for whatever reason you are still dissatisfied with your attorney, you can change counsel of course, and there is no reason for the timelines to 'reset', so that is an option. But be sure you're not just frustrated with the system because that isn't going to change no matter who the attorney is.

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