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Asked in Estate Planning, Contracts, Banking and Probate for California

Q: Co-admin of intestate estate removed CA PROB §8500, is estate still liable for assignment of beneficial interest?

My brother took inheritance advances and then stopped communicating with myself and the court; he and his lawyer have since been removed under CA PROB §8500. I am now the only heir to the estate and would like to know if the estate will still be liable for the inheritance advances that my brother took while he was co-admin. It is my understanding that removal of co-admin does not necessarily eliminate liability for the assignment of beneficial interest. Is there a way to avoid paying for the advances? What should the next step(s) be? If it helps to know; as of 12/02/21 the court has ordered the bank to distribute funds of the estate upon authorization of the petitioner (me) only. Thank you in advance for your insights!

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

A: Your question is not entirely clear because you are using some incorrect legal terms. The person in charge of administering an estate (the "Administrator" of the estate) is the person whose job it is to pay the decedent's final bills, ensure the final tax return is filed, and do many more administrative tasks relating to the estate. The people who inherit assets are known as "heirs" and may or may not be the same people who administer the estate. Example: Let's say a person with three children passes away. Two of those children are named as Co-Administrators because the third child lives overseas. All three children are heirs and, in the most common scenario, will inherit assets from the estate. If one of the two Co-Administrators is removed as an Administrator, that person is STILL an heir. So, being removed as an Administrator does not automatically remove someone as an heir. That is why, when you said your brother was removed as Co-Administrator and you are now the sole heir, that didn't make sense. It's possible there are more facts about which I am unaware (maybe a court order?) that would impact the legal analysis. But the bottom line is that a lawyer would need more information about your particular situation (especially about what was advanced and what interests were assigned) before a lawyer could properly advise you. Give all of the documentation and information about your situation to a lawyer in your area. You'll get much better advice from someone who has all the facts of your situation. Best wishes.

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