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In re Estate of Romero

Colorado Court of Appeals
126 P.3d 228 (2005)


Facts

Robert Romero’s will left $500 for each of his children and the remainder of his estate to his mother and sister (defendant). Romero’s mother predeceased him. Romero’s children (plaintiffs) contested the will and filed a petition for formal probate. The children claimed that Romero did not have the testamentary capacity to execute his will. Romero had been treated for schizophrenia and was a protected person under a Veterans Administration (VA) guardianship. Romero’s attorney testified that he met with Romero several times about the will and that Romero chose to effectively disinherit his children in favor of his mother and sister because of his mother and sister’s love and care and the lack thereof from his children. The attorney testified that Romero was of sound mind and understood the consequences of his actions when he signed the will. The children argued, in part, that Romero was unaware of the size of his estate. When Romero signed the will, his estate was valued at approximately $90,000. At his death, the estate was valued at approximately $450,000. Romero knew that the estate consisted of his VA and social-security benefits but was unaware of the exact amounts. The probate court denied the children’s request. The children appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Hawthorne, J.)

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