Thank you for taking the time to respond.
I was named executor in my sister’s will, and was appointed by the court as her executor at the first court hearing a few weeks after they died.
Her husband died without a will.
Things were amicable with his estate until the checks from the home owner’s insurance policies arrived. One check was for the replacement of the home and to pay off the mortgage. The other check covered the contents of the home. His heirs believe they are entitled to both checks, even though the home was gifted in her will.
They both have children from previous marriages: her children range in age from 14-19, while his are all adults. In her will, her half of the home was to go to her children, unless her husband outlived her, with her 1/2 reverting back to her children upon his death or his decision to sell the property. Her personal items (clothing, money etc) were to go to her children, unless her husband outlived her (it is not defined how long he needed to outlive her in order to inherit.) The research I have done on my own tells me that having their deaths declared simultaneously would make the undefined survival a non-issue.
I am currently without legal representation as my previous lawyer quit upon me bringing the coroner’s reports to his attention. We have a court date scheduled in two weeks.
So far this morning I have spoken to three attorneys who have said they don’t have enough time to prepare for something this complex and time consuming. Each of them has said I may petition the court to have their deaths declared simultaneous, without giving further instruction, other than saying the burden of proof lies on the husband’s estate because they stand to benefit from him outliving her.