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Smith v. DeParry
Florida District Court of Appeal
86 So. 3d 1228 (2012)
Scott Smith executed a will and a codicil to create a pet trust for his two dogs. The will named Thomas Allen, who was Smith’s longtime attorney, and Lance Smith as co-personal representatives, who also signed as witnesses. The codicil established a $40,000 trust fund for Lance to care for the two dogs. Allen lost and never found the original codicil, but he printed a copy from his computer. The representatives submitted the will and the unsigned copy of the codicil to probate, naming the guardian of Scott’s minor grandson, Astrid DeParry, as an interested party. The probate court found the computer copy did not qualify as a correct copy, and that neither co-personal representative qualified as a disinterested witness who could prove up the lost codicil. Therefore, the trust failed. Allen and Lance appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Wallace, J.)
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