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Must Heirs Be Deposed in Estate Litigation? International Heirs to Florida Estate Don’t Want Their Depositions Taken (November 19, 2014 probate litigation case)

Uncategorized Dec 9, 2014
post about Must Heirs Be Deposed in Estate Litigation? International Heirs to Florida Estate Don’t Want Their Depositions Taken (November 19, 2014 probate litigation case)

If you are making a claim to a Florida estate but don’t want your deposition taken, then you need to read thisFlorida 3rd District Court of Appeal probate litigation opinion. Why? Because as any probate litigation lawyer West Palm Beach will tell you: discovery is framed by the pleadings and if you plead, or claim, a share of the Florida estate, you are subject to the rules of discovery.  Remember: the Florida Probate Rules specifically permit discovery in probate litigation cases.

Do I have to sit for my deposition in an estate lawsuit?

  • What is a deposition in a Florida probate case?
  • A deposition is where a witness, such as an heir, or a party to the probate or estate, or some third party, like a doctor, sits and answers questions on the record and under oath in front of a court reporter and videographer who are recording the Q & A.  Every single “hmm” and “mph”, answer and question are taken down word for word.   A person who may have knowledge of facts which might lead to relevant facts may be deposed.  Are you a doctor who has information about dementia in an undue influence case?  A witness to the deathbed will?  You might be deposed.  You might also be deposed if you claim a share of the Florida estate or want to be involved in the probate Miami.
  • If you make an allegation in the Florida estate administration process, in the Palm Beach probate, you may be required to answer questions, like interrogatories, orproduce documents pursuant to a request to produce (also called a request for production by probate lawyers Palm Beach Gardens)
  • Many heirs don’t like the idea of being deposed
  • Will you have to sit for your deposition in a Boca Raton probate case?
  • Well, consider this: you generally can’t make a claim to a share of the estate on a Monday and then refuse to answer questions on a Tuesday
  • Is there a way to get around being deposed in a Florida estate case?  You might file amotion for a protective order.

How can I avoid being deposed in probate litigation Palm Beach?

  • You might consider reading this recent probate litigation appeals court opinion from Florida’s 3rd District Court of Appeal
  • 3D14-550
  • Miami Dade County probate litigation case
  • Stockinger v. Zeilberger
  • Here is the link to read the entire probate lawsuit opinion on appeal:http://www.3dca.flcourts.org/Opinions/3D14-0550.pdf
  • Consider the petition for a writ of certiorari in this probate case in Miami Dade County
  • Residents of Austria filed a petition to be recognized as heirs of the Miami estate
  • The estate was probated in Miami Dade County
  • The executor of the will, what we in Florida probate matters call the Personal Representative of the Estate, tried to depose the residents of Austria who made a claim to the Miami estate
  • The international residents and supposed heirs did not want their depositions taken in this probate case in Miami

Appeal Issues in Florida Probate Matters

  • There was an order in the Miami probate court requiring the heirs to be deposed
  • Their (the heirs’) claims could be dismissed if they did not sit for their probate depositions
  • A petition for a writ of certiorari was filed, appealing the probate court order on the depositions
  • How do you win your Florida probate appeal ?
  • How do you prove that you need a Florida appeals court to grant a petition for a writ of certiorari for a probate matter?
  • See Florida Rule of Appellate Practice 9.030(b)(2)(A)  when you are appealing a non final probate order….that is, seeking an appellate court review of a Florida probate court non final order by seeking a writ of certiorari
  • There is a 3 part test to win on appeal
  • Can you show irreparable harm?