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Questions Answered by John B. Whalen, Jr.
2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Pennsylvania on
Q: When a married couple in PA has separate wills and the man dies, do all joint accts automatically belong to the wife?

Does this make the estate bankrupt and is the wife then liable to pay outstanding bills?

John B. Whalen, Jr.
John B. Whalen, Jr. answered on May 3, 2022

… hello …

… re joint accounts? - they go to the designated joint owner …

… re bills? - they are payable by the estate …

John

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3 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: Can a financial power of attorney remove assets from an estate without compensation?

My parents helped my sibling(1) buy a house and also provided money to make improvements - new roof, bathroom(s) remodeled, etc. Now both my parents are incapacitated. My other sibling(2) has power of attorney over both of them, and used the power to re-title the property in sibling(1) name only,... Read more »

John B. Whalen, Jr.
John B. Whalen, Jr. answered on Apr 27, 2022

... hello ...

... if the facts are such as you state them, then your sibling breached her fiducairy duties ... you should consult with an experienced probate/estates attorney to resolve this ...

... it will involve court - but there is no alternative ...

... I am sorry you...
Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Pennsylvania on
Q: Pennsylvania Estate Law My dad died 2/2/2022. My sister’s the executrix and we are estranged. Want advice.

I live in Louisiana and want to know that she’s not stealing from the Estate. She just contacted me after no contact for 2 months and wants me to help clean out the family house. Am I obligated to comply? Can I charge the Estate a fee to fly up there, car rental, hotel fee since she wants help? I... Read more »

John B. Whalen, Jr.
John B. Whalen, Jr. answered on Apr 14, 2022

… hello …

… I have never heard of an executor commission being 10 percent - in Pennsylvania, it has to be “reasonable” …

… you don’t have to help her clean out the house, and being reimbursed would be up to her …

… although your father just passed a month...
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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Pennsylvania on
Q: John does she just sign the original page and have it notarized or redo the original page and have it notarized ? thanks
John B. Whalen, Jr.
John B. Whalen, Jr. answered on Apr 1, 2022

... hello ...

.. she just has to sign the original page - she does NOT have to redo it ...

... with respect to being notarized, some Powers have a notary - some do not ... just follow the document ...

John

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Pennsylvania on
Q: How to authorize power of attorney ,Wife's mother just put in nursing home care Wife is named in will as POA

My wife was second in the Power of attorney ,if her brother could not perform the task ,He passed away 12/31/2020 will was written about 8 months prior. She needs to sell the house and put it in trust for her mother to be used to pay for nursing home care, because of her brothers death she is also... Read more »

John B. Whalen, Jr.
John B. Whalen, Jr. answered on Apr 1, 2022

... hello ...

... to start, it seems that you may be confusing a few terms ... it also appears that you may be referencing two different documents - a Last Will (you had mentioned an Executor) and a Power of Attorney (you had mentioned that she is the second in that - behind her brother)...
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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: Sibling and I are beneficiaries on grandmother's will.grandparents had custody of me. I want the house I live in.

My sister wants me to sell the house. She wants the money. I grew up in and have lived in this house for 20 plus years. My grandparents took custody of me because my mother left me with them as a child. I don't have the money to buy her out, but I want my house.

John B. Whalen, Jr.
John B. Whalen, Jr. answered on Mar 30, 2022

… hello …

… from the information you have shared, that seems difficult … have you spoken to the Executor? …

John

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Pennsylvania on
Q: Have Covid restrictions extended filing deadlines i.e. estate probate filings, early tax payment discounts?

If the appointment of an estate administrator was 15 months after the death of the estate owner (date of death was Oct 2020, appointment of administrator was Jan 2022), what should be used as the the date Estate formed for generating the estate Tax ID date? Note, the original death certificate was... Read more »

John B. Whalen, Jr.
John B. Whalen, Jr. answered on Mar 9, 2022

... hello ...

... I would consult an experienced attorney with respect to what date the estate was formed ...

... with respect to filing deadlines for the discount, no ... none of them were extended ...

... good luck ...

... it seems that you may be served to have...
Read more »

3 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Pennsylvania on
Q: Is a clause in a will that directs the executor to hire a specific attorney enforceable?
John B. Whalen, Jr.
John B. Whalen, Jr. answered on Feb 2, 2022

... hello ...

... no - not at all - never ...

... John

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3 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Pennsylvania on
Q: My grandfather died without a will. My mother is deceased. can his 4 granddaughters all be executors of his estate?

We are told there can only be 2 executors. The 4 of us want to co-execute his assets so that they are handled properly and fairly. Please advise.

John B. Whalen, Jr.
John B. Whalen, Jr. answered on Jan 20, 2022

… hello …

… that’s a tall order - all of you would have to agree - and nothing would be done if one did not …

… the institutions you will be dealing with also don’t want to deal with 4 people - it’s much to difficult …

… I would suggest that all if your...
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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Pennsylvania on
Q: Is it mandatory to hire an attorney if will does not need to go into probate.

All parties are residents of Pennsylvania. Joint OR on all deceaseds accounts. Only one other party in will, can I just calculate the inheritance tax on the joint accounts with a cpa and pay the sum to the only other member mentioned in the will. Or am I required to have an attorney carry this out... Read more »

John B. Whalen, Jr.
John B. Whalen, Jr. answered on Jan 12, 2022

… there is no requirement that you need an attorney for this in PA …

… however - you mentioned a Will as well as being on all of the decedent’s accounts or joint …

… that doesn’t seem to make sense … whether a CPA can interpret that is up to you …

John

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Pennsylvania on
Q: Good afternoon, As beneficiary of an estate I’m entitled to review all documention, statements, checks, etc?

* Am I entitled. The executor, also a beneficiary, has asked that I not contact them.

John B. Whalen, Jr.
John B. Whalen, Jr. answered on Dec 28, 2021

… hello …

… usually - no … that’s why there is an Executor … if you decide to force an Accounting, then most likely …

Good luck …

Let me know if you have any other questions …

John

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: my mother passed without a will i am her only child, people told me i need a paper stating i have conrtol of her estate

i am her only child i need help to point me i the right direction

John B. Whalen, Jr.
John B. Whalen, Jr. answered on Dec 25, 2021

… my condolences …

… the paper that they are referring to is called a “Short Certificate” or “Letters of Administration” …

… you should consult an attorney who is experienced in Probate and Estates … many offer a free consultation …

… good luck …

… John …

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Pennsylvania on
Q: Father mother an daughter all on name for house, father passed away with no will do other daughters have claim to house

Father passed away with no will. His name, wife’s name, and daughter 1’s name all on house daughter 1 lives in. Do daughters 2&3 have any claim to the house or does daughter 1 need to buy out other two daughters?

John B. Whalen, Jr.
John B. Whalen, Jr. answered on Dec 24, 2021

… hello …

… (depending upon the wording of the deed) daughters’ 2 and 3 have no claim to the house …

… daughter 1 does not have to buy daughters’ 2 and 3 out either …

John

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Pennsylvania on
Q: Too many details to sum it up in one question.

You responded to my question, but with the wrong information. It wasn't my father who passed, my parents have been dead for years. My problem is... my BROTHER,has nothing in public records where it would be if there was a will or if this was being handled properly.

I realize you people... Read more »

John B. Whalen, Jr.
John B. Whalen, Jr. answered on Dec 21, 2021

… hello - please forgive me … could you explain your situation again? … I would be more than happy to help …

John

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Pennsylvania on
Q: evil estate tax

I have been trying to buy a house in pa. After many nightmares closing isnt until dec 28 now! The executor said it has to be done this week or she has to pay $30,000 in estate tax!!! How can that be? It is just wrong! I have thousands of dollars in this house! All our stuff is there!!!! We... Read more »

John B. Whalen, Jr.
John B. Whalen, Jr. answered on Dec 21, 2021

... hello - that does not seem correct at all ... did she tell you why? ...

John

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Pennsylvania on
Q: my father died without a will 7 yrs ago. my brother made himself administrator and my mother and father were separated

separated for 40 years. My brother sold my father's 2 properties. he spent the first 100,000 and closed the acct and then sold another property for 180,000 and opened another account. He and my mother will not give me my share of the estate. What can I do?

John B. Whalen, Jr.
John B. Whalen, Jr. answered on Nov 24, 2021

… you would need to pursue court assistance …

… 7 years ago is a long time, however …

John

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Pennsylvania on
Q: My mother died on August 1, 2021. in mid-July 2021, she asked me to take her money from her safe deposit box and

give it equally to all her grandchildren. But her Will says that her sons should get that money. Do her grandchildren get the money or her sons? Now my brother is taking this to probate. Can he actually get money that was withdrawn from the safe deposit box BEFORE our mother’s death – at her... Read more »

John B. Whalen, Jr.
John B. Whalen, Jr. answered on Nov 12, 2021

... hello ...

... there are a few issues here ... were you Power of Attorney over your mother? ... why did you have to give the money to her grandchildren? ... how much was given? ...

... the money may or may not be able to be pulled back, but it will be taxed on her Inheritance Tax...
Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Pennsylvania on
Q: My fiance and I purchased a house in 2016. He passed 8 months later. I am not on the loan, but I am on the Deed.

I want to sell at this time. Will I have issues? There was no will. Just our papers from settlement

John B. Whalen, Jr.
John B. Whalen, Jr. answered on Oct 9, 2021

… my condolences for your loss …

… there will be a “cloud” on the title if his estate was not opened and closed correctly …

… I can provide further details if needed …

… good luck …

John

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Pennsylvania on
Q: Can someone read my trust agreement and answer some questions?
John B. Whalen, Jr.
John B. Whalen, Jr. answered on Oct 4, 2021

… yes …

… John …

3 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Pennsylvania on
Q: I'm 18 and my parents are asking me to sign them financial powers of attorney. Should I?

They have offered to pay for my college which I'm really thankful for, but reading through the document it seems like I'm essentially hand them full control over everything I own and will ever own. They say it's only to be used in case I get incapacitate but I don't see where it... Read more »

John B. Whalen, Jr.
John B. Whalen, Jr. answered on Aug 29, 2021

… because of the nature of today’s world, coupled with the Privacy Rules, your parents would not be able to help you at all without a Power of Attorney being signed …

… yes - it is a very powerful document - but they are your parents …

… I think you know what to do …

John

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