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In re Estate of Rothwell

Other Lower Courts

July 20, 2001

In the Matter of the Estate of William F. Rothwell, Jr., Deceased.

Page 192

COUNSEL

Robert A. MacKennan, Poughkeepsie, coexecutor pro se, and for Evangeline Reilly, coexecutor.

Page 193

OPINION

James D. Pagones, J.

This is an uncontested probate proceeding. It nevertheless raises several issues which compel the court's intervention. They are:

1. The lack of a family tree and affidavit of heirship.

2. Failure of the attorney/draftsman to comply with SCPA 2307-a.

3. The effect of decedent's lifetime trust and first amendment to it on the disposition of assets.

4. The cash gift to the attorney/draftsman's wife.

5. The directive in the lifetime trust to allow full trustee's commissions and reasonable attorney's fees to the attorney/draftsman.

Background

The decedent's will is dated December 3, 1997. It names Evangeline Reilly and Attorney Robert A. MacKennan coexecutors. Attorney MacKennan and Edith K. MacKennan are the two witnesses to the will.

The decedent died a resident of Dutchess County, New York, on May 25, 2001. The will was offered for probate by petition filed July 12, 2001. A revocable lifetime trust and subsequent first amendment both executed according to EPTL 7-1.17 were filed at the same time. The lifetime trust is ...


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