Mass. General Laws c.190B § 3-303

Informal probate; proof and findings required

This is an unofficial version of a Massachusetts General Law.

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Section 3-303

(a) In an informal proceeding for original probate of a will, the court or a magistrate shall determine whether:

(1) the petition is complete;

(2) the petitioner has made oath or affirmation that the statements contained in the petition are true to the best of the petitioner's knowledge and belief;

(3) the petitioner appears from the petition to be an interested person as defined in section 1–201(24);

(4) on the basis of the statements in the petition, venue is proper;

(5) an original, duly executed and apparently unrevoked will is in the court's possession;

(6) on the basis of the statements in the petition any notice required by section 3–306 has been given and that the petition is not within section 3–304;

(7) it appears from the petition that the time limit for original probate has not expired;

(8) on the basis of statements in the petition, the spouse and heirs are not incapacitated persons or minors; or if they are incapacitated persons or minors they are represented by guardians or conservators; and

(9) a death certificate issued by a public officer is in the court's possession.

(b) The petition shall be denied if it indicates that a personal representative has been appointed in another county of the commonwealth or except as provided in subsection (d) below, if it appears that this or another will of the decedent has been the subject of a previous probate order.

(c) A will which appears to have the required signatures and which contains an attestation clause showing that requirements of execution under section 2–502 have been met shall be probated without further proof. In other cases, a magistrate may assume execution if the will appears to have been properly executed.

(d) Informal probate of a will which has been previously probated in another state or country may be granted at any time upon written petition by any interested person, together with deposit of an authenticated copy of the will and of the statement probating it from the office or court where it was first probated.

(e) A will from a place which does not provide for probate of a will after death and which is not eligible for probate under subsection (a) above, may be probated in the commonwealth upon receipt by the court of a duly authenticated copy of the will and a duly authenticated certificate of its legal custodian that the copy filed is a true copy and that the will has become operative under the law of the other place.

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