A New York Probate Lawyer said that, in this uncontested probate proceeding, the petitioner, the decedent’s surviving spouse who is the nominated executor, the sole residuary beneficiary and the trustee of the Article SIXTH trust under the offered instrument. Upon motion of petitioner, this matter was transferred to this court by order of the Surrogate’s Court, New York County dated June 26, 2006. The decedent died on March 17, 2006 survived by his wife and his two adult daughters by his prior marriage. One daughter is an incapacitated person who has been deaf, blind and mentally retarded since birth.
A New York Will Lawyer said that, under the propounded instrument the decedent provided for a $500,000 trust for his incapacitated daughter, remainder to her sister or her issue. The will also provides a specific bequest of $1,000,000 to his daughter. According to the application for preliminary letters testamentary, the size of decedent’s gross estate is approximately $52,000,000. The daughter has appeared by counsel in this proceeding and indicated she has no objection to the will.
A Nassau Will Contest Lawyer said that, the guardian ad litem for the incapacitated daughter appointed by this court has filed his report. The guardian ad litem concludes that jurisdiction has been obtained over his ward. The guardian ad litem further concludes that after his investigation of the circumstances of the drafting and execution of the will, that there are no grounds for objecting to the instrument for failure of due execution, no evidence of mental disability or lack of testamentary capacity of this decedent nor any indication of the exercise of undue influence by anyone. Thus, he concludes no basis exists to deny probate to the propounded instrument. However, the guardian ad litem does report to the court concerning a property settlement agreement dated January 20, 1952 between the decedent and his former spouse. The agreement was incorporated into an interlocutory judgment of divorce entered March 3, 1952 in the Los Angeles County Superior Court of the State of California. In pertinent part the agreement provides in paragraph 17 thereof: “17. Husband agrees that he will by testamentary disposition leave not less than one-half of his net estate, after payment of debts and taxes, to his daughters in equal proportions.”