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Reading is difficult. As a writer, I help the reader every way I can think of. As a reader, I work hard not to miss the big things in the middle of the road.

Friday, August 16, 2013

The Nines Split a Decision re Adequacy of an Attempt to Contest a Will

Mr. Adrian V. Newman executed a will April 11, 2012 in which he disinherited one of his sons-- Kenneth L. Newman. Adrian Newman died June 17, 2012. Letters testamentary were issued as to this will per an order dated July 10, 2012. The proponent of that will caused a certificate to be filed that Adrian Newman had five children-- one of them- the proponent-had appeared in court, one of the other children waived notice and no one else needed notice. Kenneth contested the will January 31, 2013. The proponent's response to this contest had the file mark of January 10, 2013. The trial judge overruled Kenneth's contest in an order dated January 31, 2013-- the same day that Kenneth's contest was filed- saying that Kenneth's contest was wrong on the merits, that his contest lacked evidence and was "not . . . timely." Chief Justice McKeithen and Justice Horton held that Kenneth's contest was filed within the two year period for will contests and that Kenneth did not have to produce evidence in his pleading, because he had the right to a jury trial. Justice Gaultney dissented, saying Kenneth had not supported his argument that the trial judge was wrong, nor his claim of timely filing In the Estate of Adrian V. Newman, No. 09-13-00076-CV (Tex. App.-- Beaumont, July 11, 2013) (mem. op.) (McKeithen, C.J. and Horton, J.)

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