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Maryland Probate Questions & Answers
2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Maryland on
Q: Aunt died intestate in the state of Maryland.

No spouse, no children, no parents, no grandparents. One living sibling, and three deceased siblings. Does the living sibling receive everything, or do the children of the deceased siblings (nieces and nephews) receive a share?

Cedulie Renee Laumann
Cedulie Renee Laumann
answered on Nov 18, 2022

If there is no Will and no surviving spouse, parents or children / grandchildren, the nieces and nephews of the Deceased (children of the deceased sibling) receive under "representation". For example, if there were 4 siblings who either survived or who died with their own issue, then the... Read more »

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3 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Maryland on
Q: What happens if someone refuses to sign probate papers?

Everyone has already appeared in Orphan's court and agreed to the administators. Bit now one person is refusing to sign the approval papers. Can the court make everyone proceed with probate?

Richard Sternberg
Richard Sternberg
answered on Nov 10, 2022

Your question says you are in DC, but it is posed as a Maryland question, and I am going to guess the estate is filed in PG County, because, even though it's called Orphan's Court formally, in Montgomery, the hearings are in the Circuit Court by the Circuit Court bench, so laypeople never... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Maryland on
Q: The decedent's house appraised at $360K at time of death then sold for $380K. Is the $20K incl in the augmented estate?

Decedent was a Maryland resident and died testate. The surviving spouse elected to take the 50% elective share. The spouse had no interest in the decedent's real estate.

Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley
answered on Nov 10, 2022

If the property was an asset of the estate, then the elective share applies.

0 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Personal Injury, Appeals / Appellate Law and Probate for Maryland on
Q: What to do? my Legal gaurdian decendant prior retained law office refuse to give information after I was removed as PR.

My maternal Grandmother and non-maternal grandfather was awareded limited guardianship in 1987 and full legal guardianship in 2000 over me. *Note that I was born in 1986. My grandfather passed in 2003, while pending two litigation lawsuits since 1991; Federal Workers Compensation with the United... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate and Estate Planning for Maryland on
Q: Dad died in MD with all (I think) assets in trust. Can I file for letters of Admin now, and open estate later if needed?

Montgomery county, only assets are in financial accounts. Valuable property was divided among children and charities before his death. He is to inherit money from his sister who died in 6 weeks prior to his death

Richard Sternberg
Richard Sternberg
answered on Oct 25, 2022

In Maryland, the way you get Letters of Administration is by filing a Petition for Probate. That opens an estate. If the assets are all in non-probate assets, they get listed separately in the Information Report.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law and Probate for Maryland on
Q: Does estate have to be closed before beneficiary receives money.

I am a beneficiary, and I’m being told that I have to wait to receive any money until the account is closed. And that unless I sign over my rights to property to sell it that it cannot be closed. If I sign over my rights to the property they will close the estate and then said I would get any... Read more »

Richard Sternberg
Richard Sternberg
answered on Oct 20, 2022

If you are asking whether you can have the proceeds from the sale of the house before you agree that the house should be sold, the answer is sort of obvious. But, perhaps the real issue here is that you don't trust the personal representative or their counsel. If so, you should retain your own... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Maryland on
Q: Personal property in estate being retitled..

My moms well stated that my dad is to be her agent but if not that my sister myself or my brother Can be. My brother past away and I wasn’t included in the “PR”. Only my sister was. She has donated some of my mom’s vehicles paid off her truck and is in charge of all the accounts. I wanted... Read more »

Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley
answered on Oct 20, 2022

You need to have a lawyer review the will, the inventory and the accountings filed in the estate, before any useful advice can be provided. The estate may not have the funds to maintain the house (mainenance, utilities, property taxes, homeowner's insurance, mortgage, etc.) for five years, so... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Maryland on
Q: Wife’s brother died. Before death he verbally said she could have a certain painting. Executor says no.

Nothing is in writing. We just want to know if the executor is telling the truth based on what the wheel says they won’t show us the will. Do we have a next step.

Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley
answered on Oct 14, 2022

His oral promises before death are not sufficient. The bequest needs to be spelled out in the Will. The Will must be filed in the probate estate when the estate petition is filed. Until the estate is opened and the executor receives Letters of Administration from the court, the executor has no... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Maryland on
Q: Can i challenge my husbands will that was made during his prior marriage.
Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley
answered on Oct 8, 2022

Yes, but you need to have a basis, and you provide zero facts to evaluate on what basis you would challenge his will.

Here are a couple of general observations that apply to all estates:

First, upon divorce, his former spouse lost all legal right to receive any distribution...
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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Maryland on
Q: In probate who designates the surviving descendants as administrator - the courts 4 siblings or ? Can any of us apply?

No will, only verbal designation. Deceased resident of Albuquerque New Mexico

Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley
answered on Oct 1, 2022

The law of the state of residence where the decedent dies governs. Appointment of an executor or personal repesentative is set forth by statute. In an estate with no will (known as an "intestate" estate) a typical state's satute would list, in order of priority, those persons who... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Maryland on
Q: how can I distribure funds to a interested party, in probate ? who is unable to work. while the estate is still open.

I am the personal representative in the estate in pg county #124481.

Richard Sternberg
Richard Sternberg
answered on Jul 20, 2022

It might be wise for you to review the estate with counsel, because you, as personal representative, will be personally liable if you disburse too much or the disbursement violates the rights of some other beneficiary or creditor. But, you have broad discretion to create advances to beneficiaries.... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Maryland on
Q: My question would be What is the difference between power of attorney and an executor of the estate?
Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley
answered on Jul 5, 2022

A POA is a legal instrument that appoints another person to act as the "attorney-in-fact" or agent of the person creating the POA (the "principal"), who can do things in the name of the principal as if they were the principal, to the extent set forth in the POA. The POA is only... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Maryland on
Q: My brother died in September in Las Vegas without a will. He has one daughter in California and me, his sister, in MD.

No spouse, no living parents. He owns 1/2 his house which was just sold, some precious metals, and cash. Does his daughter get all of it, or am I entitled to any, and how much?

Richard Sternberg
Richard Sternberg
answered on Jun 7, 2022

The answer will depend on the law where your brother was domiciled when he died. If he was living in Nevada, you need a Nevada lawyer. In all likelihood, by the most common intestate succession framework, his primary heirs are his spouse (whom you don’t mention) and his issue (the daughter).

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Maryland on
Q: Can’t someone just write a resignation letter to resign as trustee of revocable trust? Maybe notarize?
Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley
answered on May 30, 2022

Most revocable trusts name the creator of the trust, known as the grantor, as trustee. Once the grantor has died, the trust typically becomes irrevocable. The trust should provide for successor trustees. It is unclear what the nature of the trust is, if there are beneficiaries who are minors or... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Maryland on
Q: My mother passed away April 10th in Maryland

My mother passed away April 10th, I went to the court and found out that she had a Will. Looking at the Will I noticed that I was not listed at all on the WILL and as being her only child I found that odd. when she became sick she made her friend her POA, she felt she was able to be there for her.... Read more »

Richard Sternberg
Richard Sternberg
answered on May 7, 2022

Of course you can challenge the Will. It is not an easy process, but if there was undue influence, lack of capacity, or the signature isn't genuine, those are all grounds to caveat the Will. You will have no chance of success without legal counsel, and you will almost surely need to pay... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Maryland on
Q: Is a spouse (no issue) entitled to the $10k family allowance if they renounce the will and take the elective share?

The husband's will left the spouse less than 25% of the residual estate. She has elected to take the elective share (50%) and has filed the necessary documents to do so. Is the Executor still required to pay her the $10,000 family allowance?

Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley
answered on Apr 15, 2022

Yes. The alowance is in addition to the elective share. In adition, you reference the elective share "of the residual estate." The elective share is against "the value of the estate subject to election, reduced by the value of all spousal benefits" where "spousal... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law, Tax Law and Probate for Maryland on
Q: Can the beneficiary get the stepped-up basis if an executor sells the house through the estate?

I am executor and beneficiary to a rental house. I want to sell it to the current tenant. I want to avoid capital gains liability. If I sell the house through the estate now as executor versus waiting for it to be transfered into my name and then sell it, will the estate then be liable for the... Read more »

Nina Whitehurst
PREMIUM
Nina Whitehurst
answered on Apr 6, 2022

The estate has a stepped up basis and can sell it and avoid capital gains assuming the net sale proceeds are equal to or less than the date of death value. If instead the estate distributes the house to you and then you sell it, the result is the same. You will get that same stepped up basis.... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Maryland on
Q: I was appointed personal representative of an estate by consent and the will was admitted to probate.

The estate is still open. I just found a later dated will that appoints me as personal representative and sole beneficiary. If the beneficiaries under the original will consent to admitting the later dated will, do I just need to file the later dated will with the written consents? Will this start... Read more »

Richard Sternberg
Richard Sternberg
answered on Mar 30, 2022

You plainly need to file the newer Will, because it voids the older Will unless it is a codicil. I do not think this gives you a new case number, but it plainly requires a new petition and notices. This sounds complex enough that using a lawyer may help.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Family Law and Probate for Maryland on
Q: Can estate executor refuse to sell house to family?

My mother passed and my sister is executor. I want to buy the house and mg daughter my be interested as well. My sister has said I cannot buy the house and my daughter can’t either because she doesn’t think it’s a good idea. The will only states that money from house sale will be split... Read more »

Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley
answered on Mar 26, 2022

The executor is supposed to sell the house at fair market value to maximize its value to the estate. The executor can sell the house to anyone for that price, or at a lower price if all the heirs who are to receive a share agree. You do not say how many heirs the house is to be divided among.... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate and Estate Planning for Maryland on
Q: Does the MARYLAND UNIFORM TRANSFER-ON-DEATH (TOD) SECURITY REGISTRATION ACT include LLC businesses?

Owner of LLC business in Maryland passed. Does the LLC business go to heir, next of kin or does it go to the Probate Court?

Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley
answered on Mar 25, 2022

The Maryland Uniform Transfer on Death Security Registration Act only applies to securities that have been registered with a beneficiary form that specifies a TOD beneficiary. While it may be possible to register a TOD beneficiary for an ownership interest in an LLC, it is not automatic. Most... Read more »

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