Answers to Common Questions and Situations

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It’s been years and the executor has not opened the estate. What can I do?

What happens when an executor does not probate a will for several years, won’t allow family members to see the will, or tell anyone about the value of the estate?


Under Georgia law, any person in possession of an original will of a deceased person has an obligation to deliver the will to the appropriate probate court. Probate law does not require the person to probate the will, but only to give it to the court.

The person named in the will as executor is not the only person who may be qualified to administer and manage an estate. In fact, the person named in the will is only first in line to do so. If that person declines to serve or will not serve, then anyone may file a request with the probate court to be appointed to manage the estate.

Since it has been several years and nothing has been done in this estate, the best option may be to request that the probate court appoint someone to represent the estate, and to ask the court to force the person holding the original will to bring it to the probate court.  That will unclog the situation and get the estate moving in the right direction

Does this situation sound familiar? We can help fix it. Contact our office for a complimentary consultation.

Disclaimer: The information above is provided for general information only and should not be considered legal advice. Our probate attorneys provide legal advice to our clients after talking about the specific circumstances of the client’s situation. Our law firm cannot give you legal advice unless we understand your situation by talking with you. Please contact our law office to receive specific information about your situation.

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About the author

Erik J. Broel
Founder & ceo

Erik founded the firm in 2009. He sees it as his personal mission to demystify the process of handling an estate or trust, and to help people by making the complex estate process simple and accessible. He believes there is always a better way to do things, and loves finding new and innovative ways to deliver better, more effective service that solves the client’s key problem or issue, and improves the client’s life.

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