Is there a statute of limitations on claiming a part of an estate?

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Is there a statute of limitations on claiming a part of an estate?

The estate was closed almost 20 years ago. My stepbrother relinquished his right to the estatebut l cannot find the paperwork and my lawyer does not keep records that old.

Asked on January 12, 2012 under Estate Planning, New York

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If there was an estate proceeding that was file din the Probate court then you may have a shot at going down to the court and asking them to retrieve the old file.  Some probate courts keep files for forever.  If he relinquished his rights then he would have had to do that on paper and it would have been filed. Is he now claiming that he did not and that he is entitled to receive a portion of the estate?  If you have proof that he was properly notified and affidavits from you and the attorney that may be enough to stave off any legal battle between you all.  And if he has no proof that he answered the notification in the time frame that the law permits (yes, like a statute of limitations which would be different in each state) then you may be fine.  Good luck.


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