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Patrick H.
Patrick H., Lawyer
Category: Australia Law
Satisfied Customers: 5361
Experience:  Dip Law LPAB - Sydney based lawyer
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In 2011, I was made an executor and beneficiary of a will. I

Customer Question

Hello,
In 2011, I was made an executor and beneficiary of a will. I held the POA for financial affairs also .
In August of this year , my POA was revoked.
The woman passed away last week .
She had a second stroke in November and the State Trustees were appointed guardian.
They were guardian for a week or two , then she died .
I want to know if there was a will that postdated the one I hold .
I have approached her last lawyer who is being coy about whether they hold a will .
The State Trustees are chasing them but not getting an answer or a copy of a will if they
hold one .
The lawyer is telling me to deal with the state trustees , but the state trustees are telling me that the lawyer wont communicate with them .
I believe I have a right to know whether the will I hold was the last one and if not , then by proof of viewing the most recent will
Can you please advise me whether this is correct
regards Peter
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Australia Law
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
HI , is this being reviewed at present ?
Expert:  Patrick H. replied 11 months ago.

Hello and thank you for your question.

Will respond with an answer shortly.

Patrick

Expert:  Patrick H. replied 11 months ago.

Hello again,

There is no certain way to be absolutely sure there is no later will, and the way the law deals with this is that if a person applies for probate presenting a will, part of the process is that they first advertise that they are applying for a grant of probate on that will in order to alert anyone holding a later will that they should come forward. Once probate is granted on a will, if later on a more recent will is found, the executor of the earlier will will be protected from liability for any incorrect distribution.

As regards ***** ***** lawyer being coy about whether they hold a will, you should refer them to section 50 of the Wills Act:

http://www5.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/vic/consol_act/wa199791/s50.html

as any person listed as a beneficiary under an earlier will is entitled to inspect and copy any subequent will if held by a party. If you write to them referring to this section and they fail to acknowledge they have a will, then almost certaily they won't have a copy and could be in trouble if it later turns out they do.

Just because you were removed as a PoA does not mean you were removed as a beneficiary or that the deceased changed their will. The PoA may have been removed for a variety of reasons, including that the deceased had thought it unfair to burden you with being their PoA, so unless someone comes forward with a new will shortly, you should proceed on the basis the will you have is the last will, and if you are listed as the executor, then that means applying for a grant of probate.

i trust the above assists.

Good luck and PLEASE RATE MY ANSWER.

Patrick

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