Tuesday, February 13, 2018
In Ramirez v. Galvan, the probate court refused an application seeking the probate of a will as muniment of title. The reasoning behind the refusal was section 256.003(a) of the Texas Estates Code (TEC), which requires a will to be “submitted for probate within four years of the testator’s death.” This rule is not an absolute. A will may be probated after the four-year period as long as the proponent is not in default. Per TEC, “default” means a “failure to probate a will because of the absence of reasonable diligence by the party offering the instrument.” In the past, Texas courts have been relatively generous in their light enforcement of this provision. On appeal, the appellate court refused to uphold the lower court’s decision. The higher court said that the probate court’s “finding is so against the great weight and preponderance of the evidence so as to be clearly wrong and unjust.”
See David Fowler Johnson, Court Reverses Trial Court’s Order Denying an Application to Probate a Will As a Muniment of Title, Texas Fiduciary Litigator, February 3, 2018.
Special thanks to Jim Hillhouse (Professional Legal Marketing (PLM, Inc.) for bringing this article to my attention.