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Iowa Estate Planning Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Foreclosure for Iowa on
Q: If a property that was deeded to me prior to the death of the mortgage holder is being foreclosed on, am I responsible?

Is the estate holder responsible for the debt?

Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Apr 12, 2021

You are not PERSONALLY responsible for paying the mortgage, but if you don’t pay it the lender can foreclose. Also, given that the decedent transferred the property to you prior to death, it is not part of his or her estate. The transfer removed the property from the decedent’s estate and was... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce, Estate Planning and Family Law for Iowa on
Q: Does my ex have any entitlement to my inheritance if we have been divorced for four years? We were married for 20 years.
Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Apr 16, 2020

No. Your ex would not have any entitlement to your inheritance even if you were still married. However, if you still owe your ex anything for support or division of property or anything like that, your inheritance will be a collectible asset if it is given to you outright. If your inheritance... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate and Estate Planning for Iowa on
Q: I have no idea what needs to be done regarding following matter...

Both my parents recently passed. Only 1 had a will and it named me as executor. Understanding is low and the stress is high. I have no idea what needs to be done. I have zero money for I'm guessing what would be a probate attorney. Is that even a financial obligation to me anyway? I'm... Read more »

Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Feb 24, 2020

Schedule a consultation with a probate attorney in the vicinity of where your parents had lived. Often initial consultations are free. You might be pleasantly surprised to learn that the attorney's fees are paid out of the estate.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Elder Law for Iowa on
Q: my sister had moms will and life policies changed omitting me. Mom has dementia. Is this legal?

Mom accured dementia after my youngest brother passed. Thats when my sister had her name listed as executor and POA.

Erik Luthens
Erik Luthens answered on Jan 19, 2020

Until your mother actually dies, the terms of her will are of nobody’s business except hers. Whether the POA was properly obtained is a matter that needs to be evaluated by an Iowa attorney who practices in estate planning and/or civil litigation.

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Iowa on
Q: How do I set up a small estate for my sister that passed away in Cedar Rapids, IA?

My sister left no will and left me as the benefiiciary on her life insurance. The life insurance company said I need to set up an estate, how do I do this for a small estate? My sister has no realestate, nothing else.

Tammy Lyn Wincott
Tammy Lyn Wincott answered on Jan 7, 2020

Usually if you were named as a beneficiary on a life insurance policy upon providing proof of death and identification the funds will be paid directly to you. I suggest getting clarification in writing of exactly what it is they want.

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1 Answer | Asked in Banking, Estate Planning and Probate for Iowa on
Q: What if someone takes money (bank CDs) that is left to someone else in a legal will?

My grandmother left 2 CDs left to my father in her will, also stating that if he passes within 30 days then they would go to me, my father passed 3 days later. The bank only had my father as a beneficiary, so they were put in his name. My father did not have a will. The bank told me they... Read more »

Kenneth V Zichi
Kenneth V Zichi answered on Jan 10, 2018

I'm sorry for your loss, however it sounds like your Grandmother messed up here. If there is a beneficiary named on an asset, the will does not control it, and if your father died 1 second after your grandmother, then the bank did what it should by placing the CDs into your father's name.... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Estate Planning, Federal Crimes and Probate for Iowa on
Q: I am on probation am I able to bow hunt for deer?
Shaun Khojayan
Shaun Khojayan answered on Oct 27, 2017

It depends on the terms of your probation and your particular case. For example, if the crime for which you are on probation involves hunting wildlife on federal lands then probation may include the condition that prohibits hunting including by bow. However, if you are generally asking whether... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Iowa on
Q: My mother died without a will in Iowa. My stepfather died months later. Do I have any rights to her half without a will?

My father had taken care of taking my mom's name off of his checking and the house deed. So it seems I might have lost any right to their estate since there is a will that was unsigned at the attorney's office naming my brother and I to inherit everything. My step father did not have... Read more »

Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III answered on Aug 4, 2017

Contact an experienced probate attorney in Iowa (or California, perhaps). If your mom died without a will, her spouse and children should share her property. It may be hard to recover money or property that has vanished, but if your step-father died with property, you may still be able to prove... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Family Law and Legal Malpractice for Iowa on
Q: Q: Both my aunt and only cousin passed away, cousin in 2005, aunt in 2006. I am the only living relative and in wills.

The estates were probated and settled. Years later a number of trust accounts have appeared as Iowa unclaimed property. The accounts have been mostly depleted with some positive balance.

Q 1. Who is responsible for the error?

Q2. If the accounts were valued more at the death of... Read more »

Kenneth V Zichi
Kenneth V Zichi answered on Jun 19, 2017

If there were a TRUST at the time of passing, the successor Trustee should have managed this -- it would NOT have gone through or been the responsibility of the Estate representatives.

This highlights the importance of people keeping their records in order to insure their heirs will know...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Iowa on
Q: I am the POA of mother's estate, I requested to withdrawal her IRA after they verified she died in the process now they

Said I can't withdrawal it, now all her children have to come in and sign a paper and now it's considered a inheritance and it's a different process, is this correct? They don't go back to the date of the request?

Kenneth V Zichi
Kenneth V Zichi answered on Apr 7, 2017

Your question is unclear. Did YOU as her PoA attempt to withdraw BEFORE she died? Then the process would have required only your signature. If she was ALREADY deceased when you made this attempt, then either the beneficiaries (if named) on the account will all need to contact the management company... Read more »

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