Kulzer & DiPadova, P.A.
76 E. Euclid Avenue, Suite 300
Haddonfield, New Jersey 08033-2342

P: 856.795.7744
F: 856.795.8982
E: info@kulzerdipadova.com

Estate Litigation

Litigation relating to Estates and Trusts is typically highly contentious and emotional, as it usually takes place between family members.

Such litigation often follows the death of a loved one, adding to an already stressful time. Kulzer & DiPadova seeks to resolve these difficult issues through amicable compromise and settlement.  However, if our attempts are not successful, our attorneys and staff competently and vigorously represent our clients through the completion of the litigation process.

Common Estate & Trust Litigation matters include:

Interpretation of Wills & Trusts

Wills and trusts often include ambiguous or contradictory terms making administration difficult or, in some cases, impossible.  Advice and direction may be sought from the Courts to clarify disputed terms.  Modification actions may also be used to revise wills and trust agreements to address issues which arose after execution of the instrument, such as the incorporation of special needs language or replacing a charitable beneficiary no longer in existence.  In interpreting or modifying an instrument, New Jersey courts strive to realize the person’s “probable intent”.  This is a broad standard, which affords courts great latitude to change instruments when presented with sufficient evidence.

Will Contests

Anyone with inheritance rights, including beneficiaries named in an instrument, as well as a decedent’s next-of-kin, may file a claim contesting the decedent’s will or the appointment of an estate representative.  This process often begins with the filing of a caveat.  Common reasons for pursuing a Will Contest include: Incapacity, Undue Influence, Forgery, and Fraud.  The attorneys of Kulzer & DiPadova have extensive experience both challenging and defending wills and trust instruments.

Breach of Fiduciary Duty

Trustees, executors, and agents under powers of attorney are bound by fiduciary duties to act in the best interests of the trust, the estate and/or the principal.  Where the fiduciary fails to fulfill their duties, such as by imprudent investment, mismanagement, embezzlement, waste, etc., they can be held personally liable for any losses and/or removed from their office.

Accountings

Fiduciaries are also required to account for their actions.  Producing and reviewing accountings is a complex and time-consuming process.  Kulzer & DiPadova’s staff of paralegals can efficiently prepare and examine accountings on behalf of fiduciaries or beneficiaries.

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