Ask The Expert: My grandmother recently passed away. We know she had written a will, but we cannot find it. What are our options?

posted by: Ben A. Neiburger Elder Law Attorney www.elderlawillinois.com

Under the laws of many states, unless you can find the original will, the courts will presume that the person who signed the will revoked it. Hence, most states will treat your grandmother's estate as if she had no will. If you can find a copy of the will, you may be able to get the witnesses to the will to present testimony that your grandmother signed the will and that the copy you found is identical to the true copy of the will that was lost. However, you still need to prove that she did not revoke her will, and that is very hard to do.


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