Q: What are my rights, under NJ probate law, as a beneficiary to get inheritance check from executor?
My Aunt passed in 2016 and her will was filed in the County of Monmouth, NJ. After her death, to my surprise, I learned from my cousin, she bequeathed me a lump sum cash legacy. My cousin, her son, is the executor and only other beneficiary named in will. My cousin has been telling me I had to wait for my Aunt's apartment sale. That sold last year. Now I'm clearly getting the sad, sickening feeling my cousin doesn't intend to fulfill Item IV in his Mom's Last Will & Testament. I'm told, by the court a final accounting not required in NJ? What are my options under NJ probate law as a named beneficiary, in a sufficiently funded estate, to get my cousin to fulfill his Mom's directive?
A: 1st I would try writing him. If that doesn't work have a lawyer send him a demand letter. Finally last resort you need to file a lawsuit.
Within 60 days of the date of probate, an executor is required to mail a written notice to all named beneficiaries stating that the will was probated, so the executor ran afoul of this requirement by your account of the matter. The deceased person’s spouse, heirs and next of kin also are entitled to receive this notice.
Time to settle the will is must be done as expeditiously and efficiently as is consistent with the best interests of the estate. Demand an accounting so you can see what is the financial state of the estate. Better yet have an attorney do it.
Obtain copy of Will from Surrogate, determine your bequest, then speak with attorney
Monmouth County Surrogate
Hall of Records
One E. Main Street
Freehold, NJ 07728-1265
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