I was named in a relative's will for a specific dollar bequest
. After I returned the Receipt and Release, the executor (who also happens to be an estate lawyer and, it turns out, probably has a conflict of interest
), said that she made a calculation error and nearly half of my bequest was due to the widow of my relative (this is New York State: spousal right of election). The executor returned my Receipt and Release, as well as a check for about half of the dollar amount of my bequest, saying that that is all I'm due, but without giving a full accounting/explanation as of yet. I have a relative, also named in the will, who is being represented by an attorney and is investigating, but the info is very slow in coming; the executor is not forthcoming. Meanwhile, as we eke out this info: AM I ABLE TO DEPOSIT THE CHECK? I was initially told by my relative's lawyer not to--and so I didn't, for several weeks--but now he says that I can, and that if I'm due more, depositing the check will in now way compromise my ability to pursue this issue legally. I hate having a check for so large an amount just sitting, gathering dust.
1) Is there any possible way that depositing the check could compromise my position and eliminate my chance to further pursue this issue legally?
2) Does the signing of the initial Receipt & Release, which clearly states the full dollar bequest made in the will, and then depositing a lesser check somehow compromise my position to pursue legally?
Again, this is New York state, in case that makes any difference. Many thanks.