In re Estate of FoxAnnotate this Case
The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the circuit court finding that Stanton Fox had died intestate, determining Fox’s heirs, and entering letters for co-personal representatives, holding that the circuit court did not commit clear error in the proceedings below.
When Fox died he was survived by five siblings. Lynette Herstedt and Fox were in an intimate relationship for more than twenty years before Fox died, but the relationship ended prior to his death. Before he died, Fox drafted a handwritten document stating that he wished to revoke all prior wills and codicils. Herstedt filed an application for informal probate and submitted a copy of a former will Fox had drafted. Fox’s siblings claimed the original will was revoked by the subsequent amendment. After a hearing, the circuit court ultimately found that Fox had died intestate, determined Fox’s heirs, and appointed co-personal representatives. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the circuit court (1) did not clearly err in finding that Herstedt had not proffered a valid will because Fox had revoked it prior to his death; (2) did not err in granting the various petitions; and (3) did not abuse its discretion in proceeding with a hearing on November 1, 2017.