Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick is expected to sign a bill into law today which delays implementation of the Massachusetts Uniform Probate Code ("MUPC"), originally scheduled for January 2, 2012, for ninety days until March 31, 2012. Following the implementation of Article V (guardianship and conservatorship provisions) in July of 2009, the enactment of the MUPC is a complete overhaul of probate practice in Massachusetts. Most notably, the MUPC provides for an informal probate administration process whereby estates can be administered without the necessity of attendance at a hearing and without continual monitoring by the court. For more complicated and/or contested matters, interested parties may petition the court for judicial intervention and oversight. Additionally, separate critical legislation relative to the Massachusetts Uniform Trust Code (“MUTC”) was passed by the House and Senate on December 27, 2011 and laid before the Governor for signature. The MUTC will provide a comprehensive system for trust administration to complement the MUPC.
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