Santa Maria, CA asked in Real Estate Law and Probate for California

Q: It has been 2 years since my mother died and I did not object to my brother being administrator. He is living in the

house collecting $1,200 a month from renters in the duplex. What can I do in NYC to get this house sold. The market is good and the house is at $700,000. Two years ago it was appraised for $580,000. Can I resubmit a new appraisal to probate court as an heir

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1 Lawyer Answer
Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III
PREMIUM
Answered
  • Probate Lawyer
  • Oklahoma City, OK

A: If you are an heir to your father's estate, you can probably force a sale of the property or for your brother to buy you out. It's a remedy called "partition", which is the right of a co-owner to get the value of his interest and get separated from his co-owners. You can probably force a partition from within the probate proceeding or you may be able to sue separately. It would be better, if possible, to negotiate with your brother and come to a reasonable agreement, which would save on attorney's fees for both of you.

Also, the rents generated by the property belong to the estate, not to your brother or you, until the Court orders distribution. If your brother has been spending those funds, you can probably have him removed as Administrator. You can also ask the court to require the property be appraised, which would happen as part of a partition action anyway. Contact an experienced probate lawyer in your state to get more information and give you specific legal advice. Many lawyers offer free initial consultations.

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