Novato, CA asked in Estate Planning for California

Q: What can I do to keep my cousin from being the Admin for my grandmother estate? She has 4 living sons and I rep. my dad

My father passed away in 2011 and my grandmother in 2020 she left no will and my cousin who's father is still living and married is trying to become the administrator for my grandmother's estate. She had no will and 4 living sons. She wants to sell her house and we want to stop her. the court date is this Thursday. Is it too late?

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2 Lawyer Answers
Howard E. Kane
Howard E. Kane
PREMIUM
Answered
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Oakland, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: I recommend that you file a written objection with the court as soon as possible. I also recommend that you attend the court hearing to make sure that your objection is heard. In addition, if the appointed administrator has full authority and decides to sell the house, then you will still have the opportunity to object to any sale since the administrator will need to serve a Notice of Proposed Action. Objections must be filed within 15 days of service of the Notice of Proposed Action.

1 user found this answer helpful

Julie King
Julie King
Answered
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Monterey, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: You must move quickly and prepare a formal objection to the appointment of your cousin as administrator. If you don't know how to do this, you should try to hire a lawyer to help you, but it may be difficult to find a lawyer on such short notice. Most estate planning lawyers are extremely busy these days due to COVID and people realizing the importance of estate planning. [As a side note, please take your situation as a life lesson and insist that each person in your family set up a plan to avoid forcing the rest of you to go through the probate court process over and over again with each death in the family. You'll see that probate is expensive, takes at least a year, and everyone has to wait to get their inheritance until probate is finished.] You should attend the hearing and sit in the audience until the judge calls your case. You will be asked to say your name and spell it for the record, then be prepared to explain in AS FEW WORDS AS POSSIBLE why your cousin is not qualified or the best fit for administering the estate. Do not interrupt the others when they are speaking. Bring a pad and pen to take notes if you want to respond to sonething someone says, so you don't forget what you were going to say. The judge is in control of the courtroom and will get mad if you are not respectful of others. Best wishes.

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