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Long Island Probate FAQ


How long does it take to finish a probate case in Long Island?

Most probate proceedings take more then a year to complete, but a few of them can be done in as little as 7 months. 7 months also happens to be the cutoff point for creditors making a claim against the estate. If the estate is contested it may take years to litigate it or reach a settlement. For more information see our sample probate timeline.

Is there a deadline to finish a probate case in Long Island?

There is no official deadline to finish up a probate case. The amount of time it takes to finish up a probate case depends on many factors, including the number of parties, the size of the estate, and the complexity of legal issues presented. Uncontested estates proceed much faster then contested ones.

Is there a deadline to file a will in Long Island?

There is no official deadline in Long Island for probating a will. However, if a will is offered for probate much later then the person making it died and it is then contested, it might arouse the judge’s suspicion as to the authenticity of the will. The court will also look unfavorably if such delay was to the disadvantage of some other party.

What are the commissions that an executor of an estate gets in Long Island?

The executor receives a fee based on a percentage of the total value of the estate, in the following amounts based on a percentage of the estate:
5% of the first $100,000
4% of the next $200,000
3% of the next $700,000
2 ½% of the next $4,000,000
2% above $5,000,000
Many executors waive the commissions to save on income taxes if they benefit under the will.

Is there anything I can do if my relative is hiding a will?

If you think that someone is hiding a will, you are in a difficult situation – it is possible that the will is already destroyed and you have to resort to other means in proving the contents of the will. You might be able to get a copy of the will from the Nassau County Surrogate’s Court or the Suffolk County Surrogate’s Court, or from the attorney who originally drafted the will.

Will a former wife who is still in the will inherit under it?

The former wife will not inherit, but anyone else listed in the will is going to inherit, for example, her children or other relatives.

If a person who inherits under a will is no longer alive, what happens to their share?

If it is an outdated will and a person listed in the will as a beneficiary is already dead, the first thing to look at is the will – it might specify what happens. If it does not, then the children of the dead person will get his share, but only if the children are also the grandchildren or nephews/nieces of the person who wrote the will.

This is if that person died before the person who made the will. If that person died after the person who wrote the will, his or her relatives get the share.

I was adopted after the will was made but I am not in the will. Is there anything that I can do?

If you were adopted after a will was already executed, then you would get your share from the other children’s inheritance.

For more information and to schedule an appointment to discuss your estate probate, call the Law Offices of Albert Gurevich at (516) 777-0647 and set up an appointment with a Long Island estate attorney.