United States Probate Limitations

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[[Portal:United States Probate|Portal:United States Probate ]]>  
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''[[United States Probate Records|United States Probate ]] [[Image:Gotoarrow.png]]  [[United_States_Probate_Limitations|Limitations]]''
 
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== Limitations of a will  ==
 
== Limitations of a will  ==
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*The will may omit a child who already received their inheritance  
 
*The will may omit a child who already received their inheritance  
 
*Maiden names of female spouses are not usually mentioned  
 
*Maiden names of female spouses are not usually mentioned  
*Children are not always listed in birth order; sons may be listed before the daughters 
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*Children are not always listed in birth order; sons may be listed before the daughters   
 
*No every-name index for those listed in the will  
 
*No every-name index for those listed in the will  
 
*May have a problem with punctuation--Mary Beth, one name or two?  
 
*May have a problem with punctuation--Mary Beth, one name or two?  
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*:Brother and sister may mean brother and sister in the gospel
 
*:Brother and sister may mean brother and sister in the gospel
  
== Limitations of probate records ==
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== Limitations of probate records ==
  
*Not everyone left a will
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*Not everyone left a will  
*Not all relatives are listed--usually only the wife and children
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*Not all relatives are listed--usually only the wife and children  
*Date of death is usually not given
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*Date of death is usually not given  
*Indexes usually list testator, not heirs or beneficiaries
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*Indexes usually list testator, not heirs or beneficiaries  
 
*Information on the residence of relatives is rare
 
*Information on the residence of relatives is rare

Revision as of 18:57, 31 August 2010

United States Probate  Gotoarrow.png  Limitations

Limitations of a will

When analyzing a will record, be aware of the following potential problems:

  • The spouse mentioned in the will may not be the mother of the children mentioned in the will
  • The will may omit a deceased child
  • The will may omit a child who already received their inheritance
  • Maiden names of female spouses are not usually mentioned
  • Children are not always listed in birth order; sons may be listed before the daughters 
  • No every-name index for those listed in the will
  • May have a problem with punctuation--Mary Beth, one name or two?
  • Sometimes cannot determine the difference between married and middle names
  • Relationships may be misleading
    Uncle/aunt may be spouses
    Cousin may mean nephew/neice
    In early wills, son-in-law could mean step son or nephew could mean grandson
    Brother and sister may mean brother and sister in the gospel

Limitations of probate records

  • Not everyone left a will
  • Not all relatives are listed--usually only the wife and children
  • Date of death is usually not given
  • Indexes usually list testator, not heirs or beneficiaries
  • Information on the residence of relatives is rare