Washington, DC asked in Estate Planning and Probate for District of Columbia

Q: If I went and filled a will with the courts and was appointed executor would any new wills have to be contested

I filed my father’s will and was appointed executor by the courts but a few days after I did this someone else has presented a new will. Would they have to contest mine since the court already filed it or would theirs automatically be valid since it was more recent? And would they automatically be executor as well or would all of it have to be contested?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Rockville, MD
  • Licensed in District of Columbia

A: The Register of Wills will automatically convert the proceedings to Judicial Probate, and schedule a hearing to determine which Will is valid. You will likely be converted from a PR to a Special Administrator, which limits what you can do, pending determination by the court as to which will is the valid will. If both wills were validly executed while the decedent was alive and mentally competent, then the newer will prevails and all earlier wills would be deemed revoked. If you believe the newer will was executed under fraudulent circumstances, such as when the maker was not mentally competent, or was unduly influenced (manipulated through overbearing conduct of others) to sign the will against their intent, then you can challenge the will. You should probably consult a probate attorney before taking further action.

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