Copy of my fathers will

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Copy of my fathers will

I am an natural born child, beneficiary. I also my be a co executor. My
fathers attorney is hesitant to give me a copy of my fathers will. Can he
legally refuse?

Asked on August 10, 2016 under Estate Planning, Alabama

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Has your father passed away? Most likely he has, if you're posing this question, but if he has not, then you have no right to see the will: until a person passes, his potential beneficiaries, etc. do not have any right to see the will. You father can instruct him to show you the will, but he would need to do this.
If your father has passed away, and you are a beneficiary or an executor, you have the right to see it.
However, suppose that your father disinherited you, which is his right--he could have left all his assets to charity, a friend, etc. Then the lawyer is right to hesitate to show you the will: you have no rights under it. (You say that you are beneficiary, but if you have not seen the will, you do not know that for a fact.)
That said, as somone who would inherit if this will were invalidated due to, for example, duress (or coercion), fraud, lack of mental capacity, forgery, etc., you could (again, if your father has already passed) bring a legal action in probate/surrogate's court, alleging reasons to believe that the will is invalid. In that legal action, you will be able to see and examine the will and--if there is evidence of impropriety--potentially invalidate it.


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