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RULE 6-431. CAVEAT

West's Annotated Code of MarylandMaryland Rules

West's Annotated Code of Maryland
Maryland Rules
Title 6. Settlement of Decedents' Estates
Chapter 400. Administration of Estates
MD Rules, Rule 6-431
RULE 6-431. CAVEAT
(a) Petition. A petition to caveat may be filed by an heir of the decedent or a legatee in any instrument purporting to be a will or codicil of the decedent. The petition may challenge the validity of any instrument purporting to be the decedent's will or codicil, whether or not offered for or admitted to probate.
(b) Time for Filing.
(1) Generally. Except as otherwise provided by this Rule, a petition to caveat shall be filed within six months after the first appointment of a personal representative under a will, even if there has been a subsequent judicial probate or appointment of a personal representative under that will. If another will or codicil is subsequently offered for probate, a petition to caveat that will or codicil shall be filed within three months after that will or codicil is admitted to probate or within six months after the first appointment of a personal representative under the first probated will, whichever is later.
(2) Exceptions. Upon petition filed within 18 months after the death of the decedent, a person entitled to file a petition to caveat may request an extension of time for filing the petition to caveat on the grounds that the person did not have actual or statutory notice of the relevant probate proceedings, or that there was fraud, material mistake, or substantial irregularity in those proceedings. If the court so finds, it may grant an extension.
Cross reference: Code, Estates and Trusts Article, §§ 5-207, 5-304, 5-406, and 5-407.
(c) Contents. The petition to caveat shall be signed and verified by the petitioner and shall include the following:
(1) the name and address of the petitioner;
(2) the relationship of the petitioner to the decedent or the nature of the petitioner's interest in the decedent's estate upon which the petitioner claims the right to file the petition;
(3) the date of the decedent's death;
(4) an identification of the instrument being challenged including a statement as to whether it has been offered for or admitted to probate;
(5) an allegation that the instrument challenged is not a valid will or codicil of the decedent and the grounds for challenging its validity;
(6) an identification of the instrument, if any, claimed by the petitioner to be the decedent's last will, with a copy of the instrument attached to the petition or an explanation why a copy cannot be attached;
(7) a statement that the list of interested persons filed with the petition contains the names and addresses of all interested persons who could be affected by the proceeding to the extent known by the petitioner; and
(8) the relief sought, including a request for the probate of the instrument, if any, that the petitioner claims is the true last will or codicil of the decedent.
(d) Additional Documents. A petition to caveat shall be accompanied by a list of all interested persons who could be affected by the proceeding in the form prescribed by Rule 6-316, a Notice of Caveat in the form set forth in section (e) of this Rule, and a Public Notice of Caveat in the form set forth in section (f) of this Rule.
(e) Notice to Interested Persons of Caveat. A notice to interested persons of the filing of a caveat shall be in the following form:
[CAPTION]
NOTICE OF CAVEAT
As an interested person, you are notified that:
(1) A petition to caveat challenging the decedent's will
dated
_________________________
or codicil dated
_________________________
or both has been filed with the court
 
by
 
(name of petitioner and relationship to decedent or
 
other basis for interest in the estate)
(2) The present status of the will or codicil or both being challenged is:
[ ] admitted to probate on _______________ , or
(date)
[ ] offered for probate but not admitted; or not offered for probate.
(3) As to defense of the will or codicil or both by a personal representative:
[ ] The following person has been appointed personal representative:
 
name(s) and address(es)
[ ] No person is serving as personal representative. A copy of the petition to caveat is enclosed.
(4) This caveat proceeding may affect adversely any rights you may have in the decedent's estate. Further information can be obtained by reviewing the estate file in the office of the Register of Wills or by contacting the personal representative or the attorney for the estate. If you want to respond, you must do so in writing filed with the court or with this office within 20 days after service of this notice or any extension of that period granted by the court. A copy of any response you file must be sent to the petitioner or the petitioner's attorney
 
(name and address)
and to the personal representative or the personal
representative's attorney.
Date:
 
 
Register of Wills for
 
 
Address
 
Telephone Number
(f) Public Notice of Caveat. A public notice of the filing of a caveat shall be in the following form:
[CAPTION]
PUBLIC NOTICE OF CAVEAT
To all persons interested in the above estate:
Notice is given that a petition to caveat has been
filed by __________________________ challenging the
will dated______________________________________ or codicil dated ______________________________ or both. You may obtain from the Register of Wills the date and time of any hearing on this matter.
 
Register of Wills
(g) Number of Copies. The petitioner shall file a sufficient number of copies of the petition to caveat and Notice of Caveat for the register to comply with Rule 6-432.

Credits

[Adopted June 28, 1990, eff. Jan. 1, 1991; Dec. 13, 2016, eff. Apr. 1, 2017.]
MD Rules, Rule 6-431, MD R DEC EST Rule 6-431
Current with amendments received through September 30, 2021. Some sections may be more current, see credits for details.
End of Document