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What is Sought in Discovery from Estate Planners?

A successor trustee is generally entitled to discover confidential information between his/her predecessor and the predecessor's attorney. In disputed matters of testate and intestate succession, nonprobate transfers, or Intervivos transactions, parties claiming rights through the decedent generally have a right to discover the decedent's attorney-client communications. Issues commonly addressed include: a list detailing the decedent's priorities; notes of meetings (who attended, what was discussed, when matters were discussed and why changes were being made); document drafts; prior estate planning documents; and all communications between the decedent, his or her representatives and the attorney.

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