Massachusetts law about wills and estates

A compilation of laws, regulations, cases, and web sources on wills and estates law.
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Massachusetts law

Uniform probate code

Uniform Probate Code, MGL c.190B (MUPC)
Laws of intestate succession, estate administration, and much more.

Without a will

MGL c.190B, s.2-101 et seq. Descent and distribution of real and personal property.
MGL c.190B, Article III Probate of Wills and Administration

With a will

MGL c.190B, s.2-501 et seq. Wills
MGL c.190B, Article III Probate of Wills and Administration.
MGL c.191B Uniform Statutory Will Act

Forms

Wills, Estates and Trust Forms, Probate and Family Court

Fees

Uniform Schedule of Fees.

Request for Limited Issues Settlement Conference, together with Guidelines for Participation. Free Pilot Program designed to settle cases where the majority of the contested issues have already been resolved. Mass. Probate and Family Court Department.

Web sources

Best bet

Estate planning 

Wills and estates administration 

Intestacy 

  • Cosgrove v. Hughes, 78 Mass. App. Ct. 739 (2011)
    "If a decedent has acknowledged paternity of a person born out of wedlock . . . that person is heir of his father." The child does not have to prove a biological connection.
  • Degrees of Kinship Chart, Mass. Probate and Family Court.
  • Digital Assets and Intestacy, BU J. Sci. & Tech. L. (2015)
    Discusses the current state of the law regarding digital assets, and argues that "legislation is needed to authorize legal ways of managing these assets and to clarify the rights of heirs to access such assets."

Print sources

Complete Guide to Planning Your Estate in Massachusetts, Atlantic Publishing, 2011.

Drafting Estate Plans Under the new MUPC and the new MUTC, MCLE, 2013

Drafting Wills and Trusts in Massachusetts, MCLE, loose-leaf

Estate Planning for the Aging or Incapacitated Client in Massachusetts, MCLE, 2012.

Massachusetts Estate Planning, Will Drafting and Estate Administration Forms: Practice, Lexis, loose-leaf

Massachusetts Probate Manual, MCLE, loose-leaf

The new MUPC is here... and now, MCLE, 2012

Planning for the Vacation Home, MCLE, 2014

A Practical Guide to Estate Planning in Massachusetts, MCLE, loose-leaf.

Probate Issues Resolved Under the MUPC: Answers to the informal probate process, at last!, Mass. Bar Institute, 2013

Settlement of Estates and Fiduciary Law in Massachusetts, with supplement.

Trials and Tribulations of Estate Administration Under the MUPC, Suffolk, 2012

Contact

Phone

Within Massachusetts only

Within Massachusetts only

Online

Reference librarians online Chat with a law librarian 
Reference librarians via email masslawlib@gmail.com

Address

Administrative office (no law library at this location)
2 Center Plaza
9th Floor
Boston, MA 02108
Last updated: July 26, 2018

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