How do I locate the unknown lawyer of my late grandfather’s will?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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How do I locate the unknown lawyer of my late grandfather’s will?

My late grandfather made it known that he had hired a lawyer to draft his will. However, being a private man, he did not reveal the name of this lawyer. My grandfather passed unexpectedly. The will has not been found. My father an only child, has taken all the possessions and property and somehow became administrator. My grandfather had made it very clear to several family member that my father would not be the administrator nor would he receive any of the property in the will, due to my father’s past offenses and unstable mental condition. The only thing I can think to do is to somehow find my grandfather’s lawyer, but I am unsure of how to do that, since I do not know his name. I have no contact with my father, since I do not trust him and he has handled this situation deceitfully.

Asked on June 24, 2016 under Estate Planning, Tennessee


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, there may be nothing that you can do about this. The typical avenues used in such a case would be to contact the deceased's attorney and/or check with the county probate court, both of which you have done but to no avail. You could also try and search through your grandfather's papers, etc., if you had access to them, however your father has probably already done so. Accordingly, if proof of an exisiting Will cannot be entered, your father is deemed to have died "intestate". This means that his heirs inherit his estate. Typically, that is a surviving spouse, if any, and the children of the deceased. In this case, since you did not mention a spouse, the sole heir appears to be your father as your grandfather only had 1 child.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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