Locating Will or Trust of the decedent in a Safe Deposit Box.

Written by: leonora  |  Published on: January 24th, 2012  |  Category: Administration, Estate Planning

When a person dies it is important to determine if the person (decedent) had a Will. When a person dies, his/her attorney will usually have knowledge on whether the person had a Will. However, because the decedent could have left a codicil or a new Will, inquiry should be made to attempt to find the latest document.

With the help and cooperation of family, inquiry should be made with banks where decedent had accounts. If a safe deposit box key is available, the box can be accessed with proof of decedent’s death and proof of identity for a limited purpose of getting a copy of the Will and Trust documents in the box under supervision of a bank representative in accord with California Probate Code § 331.

Even when there is no safe deposit key available, the bank as the custodian of the Will documents, should be persuaded to drill the box to obtain a copy of the Will in compliance with California Probate Code §8200 and §8201.

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