Published on:

First Wife Petitions Will


A man married a woman sometime on February 11, 1921 while they were residents of New York state. A year later, the man filed a case for annulment of his marriage in King’s County. He claimed that the woman he married falsely represented herself. He court dismissed the petition for annulment of marriage.

Two years later, the wife had to be committed to a mental institution and declared as incompetent. She has been confined in a state mental institution from that time until the death of the man in 1954.

A New York Probate Lawyer said five years after the wife was declared incompetent and was ordered to be confined to a mental institution, the man filed another annulment action before the court. This time, the court granted his petition for annulment. The court’s grant of the annulment was conditioned on the execution of the husband of an undertaking to pay the state institution the sum of $7 weekly for her medical costs. The man never signed an undertaking to foot his ex-wife’s medical bills and the clerk of the court never entered the decision granting him the annulment of marriage he had prayed for.

Fourteen years later, the man married another woman in Connecticut. They had no children. In 1954, the man died and left a will. In this will, he left his entire estate to his wife.
His first and legal wife filed a petition for probate of the will through her sister who stands as her guardian. The second wife objects to the probate of the will on the ground that she is the wife of the testator and not the first wife.

The second wife claims that her marriage with the testator was validly entered into. She claims that the first marriage of her husband was annulled. She also claims that her husband also obtained a divorce from his first wife in Mexico. NYC Probate Lawyers said for this reason, she claims that “the wife” referred to in the will really refers to her and not to the first wife who is in the mental institution.

The only question before the court is whether or not the will should be probated; there is also the question of whether or not the second wife who objects to the probate of the will has an interest in the will.

The Court ruled that the first marriage of the testator was not annulled. The records were searched and there were not found any orders entered declaring the first marriage annulled.
The records of the state institution where the first wife has been confined also show that the first wife was served with notice of the annulment in 1929 but no other process was served on her: there was no process served on her to notify her that her marriage had already been annulled or declared annulled.

Brooklyn Probate Lawyers said the divorce from Mexico allegedly obtained by the testator was obtained by non-appearance. It is invalid and cannot be countenanced as valid in the state of New York.
The marriage of the testator with the second wife was made while the first marriage subsisted. It cannot be considered valid.

Under the rules of probate, only persons with interest in the testator’s estate are permitted to object to the probate of the will. Here, the objector has not proven that she has a valid and subsisting marriage with the testator. She is not the wife of the testator and she has no personality to appear or to object to the probate of the will.

The Court ruled that the first wife has met her burden to prove the illegality of the testator’s second marriage to the woman who has come forward and appeared to file an objection to the probate of the will. The notice of appearance of the second wife of the testator is stricken off the record and her objections to the probate are dismissed.

Do you wish to file an objection to the probate of a will? You need the advice and assistance of a King’s County Probate Lawyer. A King’s Country Probate attorney can explain to you that you can object to the probate of a will only if you have an interest in the estate which is the subject matter of the will which is sought to be probated. The King’s County Probate attorneys from Stephen Bilkis and Associates will help you prove your interest in the estate of the testator. The King’s County probate Lawyers from Stephen Bilkis and Associates can help you argue your case and present evidence on your objection. Call Stephen Bilkis and Associates today.

Contact Information