Raleigh, NC asked in Real Estate Law and Probate for Virginia

Q: Estate in VA. My GM died in '96, My uncle the estate executor died in 2015. Will may not have been probated. What next?

Grandma was sick and stayed with daughter in NC a few months b4 her death in NC. Do you have to probate both states, if Grandma was just there temp due to sickness. Executor died and no co-exc named in will, however; Grandma's will states heirs split property equally. What are the next steps to place property in remaining heirs names, so they can conduct business like house repairs, home insurance policies, etc.?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Richard Sternberg
Richard Sternberg
  • Probate Lawyer
  • Potomac, MD
  • Licensed in Virginia

A: If Grandma was a resident of Virginia, as can be shown by a variety of indicators, like where she had residential property, where she had a driver's license, where she paid utility bills, etc., then the probate is where she resided. Temporary residence during a terminal ailment doesn't change residence. If Grandma owned property in both states, however, her executor -- may need to open an ancillary probate in NC, but that is expedited in most states. The fact that the executor named in the will died is not a difficult issue. The probate can be opened by another qualified person, such as an heir under the will. In Virginia law, the property passes directly to the heirs subject to recapture in probate to pay debts. This can get a bit complicated, and I strongly recommend that you seek legal counsel.

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