Challenge to Actor's Will Demonstrates Probate Pitfall
People sometimes choose to take steps to enable the future transfer of their assets to their loved ones
outside of the probate process. When you use a last will your estate must be probated, and there are
certain pitfalls that go along with this course of action.
One of the pitfalls is the fact that probate can consume a great deal of time. Just how long it will take
depends on the jurisdiction in question and the complexity of the case. Even in simple and
straightforward, uncontested situations it can take close to a year and no inheritances are distributed
until the probate court has closed the estate.
Probate also affords individuals with the opportunity to step forward and challenge the wishes of the
deceased. The probate court must hear their arguments, and this can cause even greater delays and
there are no guarantees with regard to the outcome of the Will contest.
There has been a piece circulating throughout the news recently that demonstrates one of the pitfalls
of probate. The actor Sherman Hemsley passed away on July 24 and he left behind a Will that made
his longtime live-in partner Flora Enchinton his sole heir.
The Will is being challenged by a man named Richard Thornton who has suddenly appeared out of
nowhere. Though Enchinton says Hemsley never mentioned having any siblings, Thornton contends
that he is the actor's brother and by virtue of this relationship he is entitled to inherit the Hemsley
If Sherman Hemsley had made arrangements to have his resources transferred to Enchinton outside of
probate, the opportunity to contest a last Will would not have existed.
Experienced estate planning attorneys Campbell CA of the Law Office of Roy W. Litherland offers
estate planning and business planning resources to residents of Campbell CA. To learn more about
these free resources, please visit www.attorneyoffice.com/ today.