Marion, IA asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Iowa

Q: How do I set up a small estate for my sister that passed away in Cedar Rapids, IA?

My sister left no will and left me as the benefiiciary on her life insurance. The life insurance company said I need to set up an estate, how do I do this for a small estate? My sister has no realestate, nothing else.

Related Topics:
2 Lawyer Answers
Tammy Lyn Wincott
Tammy Lyn Wincott
Answered
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • San Antonio, TX

A: Usually if you were named as a beneficiary on a life insurance policy upon providing proof of death and identification the funds will be paid directly to you. I suggest getting clarification in writing of exactly what it is they want.

Bill Fix agrees with this answer

Bill Fix
Bill Fix
Answered
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Knoxville, TN

A: If you were the sole named beneficiary on the life insurance policy, you should be able to fill out the company's claim form, supplying whatever documentation they require, and get the proceeds without the need for probate. There is a distinction between probate assets and non-probate assets, and usually life insurance proceeds are not probate assets. However, if the policy named her estate as a beneficiary or a beneficiary predeceased her, the company may try to pay it out to an estate. Consult with a local probate attorney if the life insurance company will not cooperate with you.

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.