Q: Am I liable to creditors if I received my sister's life insurance policy
A: Probably not - the life insurance was paid to you pursuant to a contract your sister had with the life insurance company. However since the proceeds were never actually payable to your sister while she was alive and the policy I assume named you as her beneficiary, and did not say it was payble to her estate, neither your sister nor her estate came into any money that the creditor's can claim. Now the reason I say "maybe" is because any other property you took that your sister owned could be subject to the claims of her creditors. As a practical matter, very few creditors will want to go to the trouble of filing a probate to get at a deceased person's assets, so as long as you don't need to file a probate or a small estate affidavit to collect property in your sister's estate you will probably be fine. It would be a good idea to consult with an experienced probate lawyer to find out if there are any potential issues you need to be aware of.
A: If the life insurance was payable to you upon your sister's death, then you have no obligation to pay her creditors. If the life insurance was payable to your sister's estate upon her death, and you are a beneficiary of her estate, then the estate is obligated to pay your sister's creditors using the life insurance proceeds if necessary.
Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.
The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.
Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.