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Rudolf J. Karvay

New York Probate Attorney


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The probate process or the administration of an estate are likely to be contested if heirs or other interested individuals believe that their rights were denied. Wills and trusts may be contested for various reasons. A husband or wife can assert a right of election. A fiduciary may have his or her performance questioned. Serious and sophisticated issues are linked to litigated estates. It is vital to obtain skilled legal help and advice to secure your inheritance and make certain that you get what you are lawfully entitled to.

With two decades of practical experience, we recognize the emotional and financial challenges associated with estate litigation. We have expertly represented clients in claims concerning the validity of a will or trust, the administration of estates and trusts and disputed accountings.

Our top priority is to lead parties to a sensible and amicable resolution and thereby averting complications, expense and unnecessary conflict. On the other hand, we will fiercely litigate on the part of our clients when required.

Examples of Litigated Estate Matters


Estate administration may be a complicated matter, and many individuals may have an interest in the estate, or make claims against it. Speeding up the procedure of estate administration is often of great benefit for the heirs to an estate. The numerous difficulties and challenges in probate, including claims, legal actions, disputes as well as other concerns need the maximum level of legal counsel to address properly.

Spousal Right of Election

Under New York law, the inheritance rights of a husband or wife are protected. The spouse is allowed an elective share of the assets following the death of their marriage partner. This is prescribed as the greater of $50,000 or 1/3 of the estate.

Will & Trust Contests

A will may be contested if it is incorrectly executed, when it may be established that the testator was not of sound mind, senile or delusional when the will was drafted and signed, or in cases of undue influence being apply to the person, or in cases of fraud.

Contested Accountings

Breach of Fiduciary Duty

If the executor, estate administrator or a trustee is responsible for improper losses to the estate or trust, they may be surcharged for any losses compelled to repay the estate. It could be essential to file suit against an administrator, executor or trustee for breaching his fiduciary duty. An element of the administration of an estate includes a full accounting of the management of the estate or trust for the beneficiaries. These accounting actions may be informal or possibly a formal proceeding, depending on the situation. If you think you might be entitled to an accounting, the firm can help you.

Contested Powers of Attorney

A Power of Attorney is often vital, however this document has risks as well, because it grants another party legal authority to make decisions. It is essential that you delegate a trustworthy family member or friend to handle your personal and financial affairs in case you end up incapacitated. Should a power of attorney be abused, there may be severe complications to an estate, because of self dealing, embezzlement and other forms of mishandling of assets.

Safeguarding of

Beneficiary Rights

If you, being an inheritor to an estate, have your rights violated, legal action should be tackled to recover your rights as well as the inheritance you rightfully are entitled to.

Fraudulent Transfers

There are cases where a caregiver, relative or some other individual has perpetrated undue influence over another while they were ailing, or perhaps in a vulnerable state either physically or mentally. When there are suspicious transfers of assets made during the last few weeks or days of a decedent's life, there may be cause for legal action.

Real Estate Partition Actions

The heirs of an estate may inherit real property that may be owned with other individual(s). If one or more of the owners desire to sell while some don't, there may be a legal issue that needs to be settled by way of a partition action.

Will & Trust Construction

Whenever a will or trust is drawn up, unclear language can result in significant legal concerns after the person dies. We represent our clients in court when these matters come into question and the court must decide. We can evaluate a trust or will to find out if there are ambiguities in the language that may have an impact on the interests of our clients.

Guardianship Proceedings

There are numerous instances through which an incapacitated person ends up being the victim of a fraudulent transfer, has had an abuse of a power of attorney or some other scenario that resulted in a considerable loss of assets of an estate. It may turn out to be essential to hasten a guardianship application as a way to protect or recoup an incapacitated person's assets. What's more, it might be important to make certain that the person receives proper health care and treatment.


Any time there are issues with wills, for example cases of undue influence by a relative, attorney, clergy, or some other person, legal action may be instituted to enable a person to protect their rights as a beneficiary as well as fight to get back any assets belonging to the estate that were transferred illegally.

Real Estate

The selling or buying of residential property ought to be carefully managed by highly qualified legal counsel. Real estate contracts need to be analyzed very carefully and mortgage documents reviewed for accuracy to help avert potential complications, damages and legal issues.

If you think that the transfer of the assets of the decedent was carried out wrongly or you require legal help and support as part of an estate matter, contact us right away.

It is vital to be aware of the time constraints (statute of limitations) in estate litigation matters. For instance, prompt action is necessary to contest a will and if not done immediately, it's possible you'll forfeit what you are entitled to. Consequently, it really is critical to get expert legal advice without delay.

Call a New York estate litigation attorney today.


Contact Information

Main Office:

100 Garden City Plaza, Suite 300

Garden City, NY 11530

(516) 780-0281

(631) 944-8034

(718) 360-9014

The leading cause of unnecessary estate and trust litigation is the fiduciary’s failure to effectively communicate with the beneficiaries.

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Author: Rudolf J. Karvay

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