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Questions Answered by Michael D. Whipple

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Washington on

Q: Is there any reason to "leave probate open as long as possible" ? Does it benefit the heirs or the attorney?

Michael D. Whipple answered on Jan 2, 2018

Generally, no. Washington law requires personal representative to act in an effective manner in the best interests of everyone with a stake in the estate (creditors and heirs, alike).

RCW 11.48.010

General powers and duties.

It shall be the duty of every personal...
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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Washington on

Q: Hi my father died and my brother is the admin. He gave me some money but won't show me any of the bank stuff or insurane

My brother is the oldest and my dad believed that the oldest should take care of this. He didn't leave a will that I know of but it was known that we were to share the estate. There was three boys but one the sons passed away. Dad wanted the third sons share to go to his wife and kids. The... Read more »

Michael D. Whipple answered on Jan 2, 2018

You can file a 'request for special notice' with him and the court where probate is opened. Request an estate inventory, at the same time. He is required to provide this to you within 10 days of request (if the probate has been opened 90 days). This will at least provide you a list of all assets he... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Washington on

Q: My grandmother passed & willed everything to my aunt is it OK for her to go down & get the money out of My grandma bank

Michael D. Whipple answered on Jan 2, 2018

Washington law allows people to sign a "small estate affidavit" to settle estates that the value of the assets are below $100,000.00 AND there are no creditors (this is important), and, as you indicated, there are no additional heirs to be consulted. However, since there was a will, in this case,... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Washington on

Q: my mom died in a nursing home. The State took her SSI . She owned nothing. Why do I have to go through probate?

DSHS asset recovery wants mine and my sisters SS numbers. We went into debt paying for her Cremation.

Michael D. Whipple answered on Jan 2, 2018

There is no requirement for anyone to have to go through probate.

Probate would be for the purposes of settling debts and transferring ownership of assets of your mother's estate.

No one can "inherit" someone else's debt. They can accept to receive encumbered assets. That may or may...
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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Washington on

Q: If a person disappears and is not found, how long do the heirs have to wait for inheritance in Wash State?

Michael D. Whipple answered on Jan 2, 2018

These types of cases always prove interesting and answers really depend on the particular facts and circumstances-However, a general rule of thumb is 7 years.

If possible, you want to have the county coroner or medical examiner make a declaration of presumed death. We have been successful...
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1 Answer | Asked in Probate and Estate Planning for Washington on

Q: If my sister is assigned as executor on my father's will and doesn't wish to do it, what do I need to do to be assigned?

I am listed next on the will as co-executor and would be willing to act as executor.

Michael D. Whipple answered on Jan 2, 2018

You would petition the court for appointment as personal representative(executor) seeking 'Letters of Administration.'

You would submit the petition with an order to that effect. If the will stipulates 'without bond' and with 'non-intervention powers', your petition and order would reflect...
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1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Probate for Washington on

Q: Brother passed away with no will. He only had property. Which bank note is paid in full. Stepfather placed lean on deed.

How to keep property from probate?

Michael D. Whipple answered on Jan 2, 2018

The best course to resolve these issues (i.e. transfer of real property and efficacy of lien) is to use the probate process. Depending on whether he was married at death, his spouse or an interested party may open probate by seeking appointment as the "Personal Representative" (executor) of the... Read more »

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