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Probate and Estate Litigation Blog

Will of former big city mayor's mom in dispute

Before any of this blog's Minnesota readers get the impression that probate litigation only happens when there is a lot of money at stake, they should be aware of the unfolding story of the probate fight involving the will of the mother of a big city mayor. The mayor and his seven siblings are currently wrangling over the details of their late mother's estate.

For his part, the mayor has stated publicly that he supports the decisions of his brother, who was named executor of the estate. The mayor also has both pointed out that his mother was not a wealthy person and expressed hope that the matter could be settled out of court by way of a mediation session involving his family members.

However, two of the mayor's sisters are arguing that the executor of the estate misinterpreted the will. They point out that the will did not list one of the siblings by name, even though the will in other places mentioned eight children. They believe, therefore, that they should have received a larger portion of their mother's estate. Moreover, they claim that several items of their mother's personal property are missing or were taken by other family members who had no right to the items.

This case illustrates to Minnesota residents that will litigation is not necessarily limited to high-dollar estates. Sometimes, critical issues involving life and death wind up in probate court, and sometimes, even though the issue revolves around on a modest amount of money, people feel strongly enough about their cases that they are willing to stand on principle. In any type of Minnesota probate litigation, experienced legal assistance is available.

Source: The Washington Post, "Family of former mayor Tony Williams in probate court over mother's will," Keith L. Alexander, May 17, 2015

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