West Valley City, UT asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Utah

Q: What can I do to ensure that my son's father's assets are properly distributed after his father's recent death?

My 19 year old son's father died 8 days ago, and the mother of the deceased has self-appointed herself executor and claims that the assets need to go to her because her son borrowed money and never repaid her. There was no legal contract for this supposed debt, but she is already trying to sell things off without any regard for the proper legal process or my son and his half-brother who is ten. How can I, as the ex-wife but mother of one of his son's make sure that this is dealt with legally? Thanks

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1 Lawyer Answer
Wesley Winsor
PREMIUM
Wesley Winsor
Answered
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Saint George, UT
  • Licensed in Utah

A: If your son wants to assert his authority as personal representative of his father's estate, then he can do so through a probate process. I have pasted the relevant code section below. In addition, if your son doesn't want to do it, he can nominate you serve as his father's personal representative.

Your son will have to assert his intentions by filing a petition to probate his father's estate and for appointment of personal representative.

I hope this helps.

Utah code give him the highest priority together with any siblings for appointment of personal reprsentative:

75-3-203. Priority among persons seeking appointment as personal representative.

(1) Whether the proceedings are formal or informal, persons who are not disqualified have priority for appointment in the following order:

(a) the person with priority as determined by a probated will, including a person nominated by a power conferred in a will;

(b) the surviving spouse of the decedent who is a devisee of the decedent;

(c) other devisees of the decedent;

(d) the surviving spouse of the decedent;

(e) other heirs of the decedent;

(f) 45 days after the death of the decedent, any creditor.

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