Q: What will happen to my Uncle's estate?
My great uncle has unfortunately passed away recently. He has a living will that's kept in a lockbox under a bed. (At the nursing home he and his wife lived in.) His wife will not turn over the will to anyone. All that manners to us is his last wishes are carried out. His estate in total could be anywhere from hundreds of thousands of dollar or perhaps a million dollar the exact amount we are not certain. What happens from here? Does the state step in? Do we have to wait and see? We're located in the state of Tennessee. My uncle's only son has passed away a year before. His only living blood family is his nephew, three great nieces, and one great nephew.
A: I recommend filing for Probate Administration in whatever County most of his assets are in, such as possibly Fentress County. You or another relative can request being the Administrator, who will probably have to post a Bond. If the Wife has an actual Will then she can then file it for Probate. But a "Living Will" is not a Last Will and Testament, but has to do only with what to do with his resuscitation or body parts,. The Legislature made a clear misnomer. There may or may not be a Will. If no Will, the Wife will take at least a third plus, after the Administration expense. More than likely she will take the entire Estate after Admin expenses. But a Will might radically change that, subject to the third plus again. The Nephew is a very interested Heir and Next of Kin. If a Will is never Probated, it has no effect. This is a case where Probate is probably necessary.
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