Philadelphia, PA asked in Estate Planning and Probate for North Carolina

Q: My disabled sibling died, 7 weeks later my mother (his caretaker) died in 2015. I live in NJ and paid all arrangements

They had no insurance or wills. Can I claim their small funds (3400) from their joint checking account to cover all my expenses?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Jammie Lynn Wacenske
Jammie Lynn Wacenske
  • Raleigh, NC
  • Licensed in North Carolina

A: Hello,

The bank will likely not give you access to their account without having Letters of Administration. What you should do is contact the clerk of court and ask them about beginning a small estate proceeding or go through with the opening a regular estate and getting the proper documentation to contact the bank. However, just because you might gain access to the account doesn't mean you can just go in and get the money for yourself. You will need to distribute funds according to North Carolina statute and through the proper channels as prescribed by law. The clerk of court should have some resources for you to go through before you open the estate. The clerk that you will need to contact is the clerk of the county of the last residence of the decedent(s) and they should be able to point you in the right direction (they cannot, however, provide legal advice, you will need to reach out to an estates attorney for that).

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