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New York Probate Questions & Answers
0 Answers | Asked in Probate for New York on
Q: What does a Voluntary Administrator of a Small Estate do - when one of two named beneficiaries - refuses to communicate.

This beneficiary is entitled to half of decedents tangible personal property - but refuses to communicate or participate in a process to divide the personal property (and a small amount of cash) . Can't get her to officially disclaim inheritance either. No responses to email / postal mail.

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant, Real Estate Law and Probate for New York on
Q: My Sister in Law and I are Tenants in Common. The house is filled with the personal property of original owner.

This house passed to us immediately upon the death of the Life Tenant - outside if probate. An Executor or Adminstrator has not yet been appointed by the Surrogates Court. The personal property contained within the house must eventually be distributed to the beneficiaries in the former owners will.... Read more »

Jack Mevorach
Jack Mevorach
answered on Aug 9, 2022

I wouldn't. The house should be secured by the fiduciary and then the personal property can be inventoried.

Jack

1 Answer | Asked in Probate and Real Estate Law for New York on
Q: I and my Sister in Law are Tenants in Common. House immediately passed to us outside of probate after my mother passed.

I am also awaiting the Surrogates Court appointment as the Voluntary Administrator of her Small Estate (I am the named Executor in her will). Its been two months - courts seem backlogged - and can provide no estimates to this appointment - so I can't distribute property to beneficiaries yet. I... Read more »

Michael David Siegel
Michael David Siegel
answered on Aug 9, 2022

If she has joint title with you, she gets equal access. Thus, you cannot prevent her entry. If there are personal items to secure, remove them to another location. Unless the items are titled in some way, no one can ever determine who owns what.

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for New York on
Q: I am leaving my real property to my daughter. Can I provide any provision in my will or can she which would not allow

My son in law to inherit this property

Tim Akpinar
Tim Akpinar
answered on Jul 30, 2022

It looks like your question went unnoticed for almost a week under this general heading. You could repost and add "Probate" and "Estate Planning" as categories. There's no guarantee that every question is ultimately picked up here, but you might have better chances of a... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for New York on
Q: Ask Written questions to individuals in a contested Will case.

My brother died in 2020 and left his estate to unrelated individual. I would like to present certain individuals with a list of questions that they would be required to answer.

Gary Krim
Gary Krim
answered on Jul 25, 2022

If you have not contested the Will and the Will has been admitted to probate, you are probably unable to require them to answer questions.

If you are contesting the Will then you are able to ask certain questions and get some discovery, relating to the Will contest. If the contest is...
Read more »

3 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Probate and Real Estate Law for New York on
Q: My mother passed away and had 4 children. What's the easiest process to get her house sold and have proceeds split?

The house is in her name, her live-in boyfriend has a few bills in his name but not on the house.

She did NOT have a will.

The house is in semi-okay condition. It needs a lot of work. I would like to know how/when I should get the process started for putting her house on the market... Read more »

Jack Mevorach
Jack Mevorach
answered on Jul 2, 2022

A proceeding must be filed in Surrogate's Court to have an Administrator appointed as fiduciary of the estate. The Administrator can have the house sold and divide the proceeds.

Regarding the sale of the house, Have a free telephone consultation with counsel.

Jack

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2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law and Probate for New York on
Q: Does Rights of Survivorship pertain to the property deed and/or recorded mortgage?

Two people listed on the recorded mortgage but only one of them on the recorded property deed. What weight, if any, does the other (not on recorded deed) on the mortgage have in regards to ownership of the property?

Jack Mevorach
Jack Mevorach
answered on Jun 27, 2022

Rights of survivorship are generally applicable to deeds, whether by tenancy by the entirety or joint tenants with rights of survivorship. Ancillary Promissory Notes and Mortgages would need to be analyzed independently.

Jack

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for New York on
Q: Brooklyn NY: I am contesting my brother's Will. Can a father and his son who are both attorney's witness the Will?

The father drafted the will.

Gary Krim
Gary Krim
answered on Jun 17, 2022

If they are beneficiaries, then that can create a problem for each, the father more so then for the son.

If there are at least two disinterested witnesses to the Will then both father and son would receive the benefits under the Will.

Otherwise, while the Will might be valid, any...
Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for New York on
Q: MY FATHER PASSED AWAY AND LEFT HIS ESTATE TO HIS WIFE AND 4 OF HIS CHILDREN. AFTER HIS DEATH THE WIFE CHANGED THE WILL.

SHE made a will leaving my dads estate and a settlement from his job to her adopted daughter and boyfriend. is this legal. I am the Executor and oldest daughter, what are my rights

Gary Krim
Gary Krim
answered on Jun 8, 2022

To best answer your question one would have to read your father's Will. For example, if your father's Will created a trust for your father's wife funded by all his assets with her getting the income for life and on her death, the assets pass to you and your siblings, then it is... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for New York on
Q: My grandfather died and left a will. His wife is keeping everything secret to his only daughter and me the only grand.

Since we live in the Caribbean no one is telling us anything. My mother would like to know what was left for her so we just want some help what we can do before his wife do as she please.

Gary Krim
Gary Krim
answered on May 23, 2022

Because your grandfather left a Will, it has to be probated by the court if he had assets that require probate. You as the grandson have no direct stake in the estate.

As you describe it, your mother would have to be named in the section of the probate petition naming all people with an...
Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law and Probate for New York on
Q: MY FATHER RECENTLY DECEASED. HOW DO THE REMANING SIBLINGS HAVE THE RIGHT OF THE HOUSE.

THE DEED IS IN BOTH MY MOMS AND DADS. THE KIDS ARE NOT ON THE DEED. HOW DO WE PROCEED WITH THE CHANGE OF DEED WITH THE CHILDREN NAME ON IT IN CASE OF MOTHER PASSES AWAY. HOW DO WE INSURED THAT THE PROPERTY IS RIGHTFULLY OURS

Benjamin Z. Katz
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Benjamin Z. Katz
answered on May 19, 2022

If the property was acquired by your parents during their marriage, it was probably owned as a “tenancy by the entirety”. That means when your father died, your mother was automatically 100% owner. There are several options to make sure it goes to the kids upon her death. She can sign a new... Read more »

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3 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for New York on
Q: My mother and step-father (who are residents of NYS)own valuable real estate. If my mom passes away, do I have any

claim to her share of the property?

Gary Krim
Gary Krim
answered on May 9, 2022

It depends on a number of things:

1. What title on the property is - if you are on title then you have a claim to at least part of the property

2. Does you mother have a Will naming you a beneficiary - if there is a Will and you are not named as a beneficiary then assuming the Will...
Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for New York on
Q: My mother has a will filed in Erie county ny She has passed away in a nursing home . She has no outstanding debt of any

Kind .all she has is a small joint checking account of 13,000 dollars. It is in her name and my name her daughter and I am executor of her will . Do I need to file probate or can I just close the joint account with proof of her death . There is no home or property or assets of any other kind . Ty... Read more »

Benjamin Z. Katz
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Benjamin Z. Katz
answered on May 4, 2022

If you are a joint owner it is your account as much as it was hers. No need to probate her will.

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Family Law and Probate for New York on
Q: Property's owned by 3member LLC. Upon death of a member, does his spouse have a say or its just other members?

The property is owned by a three member LLC with 5%, 15%, and 85% distribution. Upon death of the member with 5%, what happens to the property? Does his wife have a say in what happens with the property? Does she get any benefits from the property? Can she make decisions on the property? If the... Read more »

Michael David Siegel
Michael David Siegel
answered on Apr 6, 2022

Depends on the operating agreement. If truly silent, the shares pass to the estate.

1 Answer | Asked in Elder Law and Probate for New York on
Q: Need a Notary Public to witness signing my will
Elaine Shay
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Elaine Shay
answered on Mar 14, 2022

In New York State a notary public is not required for a will but two witnesses are. Since all formalities must be properly completed or a will to be accepted to probate, I strongly suggest that you have a lawyer prepare and supervise the execution of your will instead of DIY.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for New York on
Q: What if a living will was signed and witnessed and notorized but not completely filled out, mussing some important info.

Two people are named, 1 to recieve 50%, the 2nd 30%, but the other 20 is not mentioned in the will. The 1st 2 people however are fully aware of what the wishes were for the remaining amount, due to many verbal conversations prior to death,and in agreement of it. It just is not there. The 1st person... Read more »

Benjamin Z. Katz
PREMIUM
Benjamin Z. Katz
answered on Mar 13, 2022

Your question appears to be about a Will. A living will something different. However, usually if percentages fall short of the full amount, any mention of the residuary means whatever is left. See if the Will mentions “residuary” or “residual”.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Probate for New York on
Q: Mother past away, her portion of aunt's will to split between my sister & I. Lawyer hasn't sent info to start.

I have received a copy of the will and athe paperwork of how everything is to be divided.

But I also requested an accounting twice and have not received anything showing the accounting of aunt's will or anything to sign. Aunt passed away almost 3 years ago. What can I do? They are in... Read more »

Bonnie Lawston
PREMIUM
Bonnie Lawston
answered on Feb 28, 2022

You may compel an accounting 7 months after the appointment of a fiduciary and admitting the Will to probate. The accounting would also force the estate to distribute the funds. You do not need to be in NY but retain the services of an attorney who practices in NY. Our clients who have... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law, Estate Planning and Probate for New York on
Q: Prior to the new changes, who inherits property in PR if grandfather died nearly 30 yrs ago?

Out of 7 children and my grandmother, my aunt is the only living child. 24 grandchildren, including her children are living. Under the previous law, who would have been executor of estate and rightful heir? Under new law, I read that we all are. One cousin lives there for years. My aunt claimed... Read more »

Elaine Shay
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Elaine Shay
answered on Feb 27, 2022

The state where a decedent lived at the time of his/her death determines which law applies for the determining distribution of estate assets. In New York, if there is not a will that provides for a different distribution the order of inheritance is outlined at this link:... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for New York on
Q: How do we go about receiving our beneficiary benefits if an insurance company deemed the policy abandoned but it wasn't?

The insurance company asked for paperwork about the deceased primary care physician and hospital stays at time of death, which was provided multiple times. They insisted the facility had no records of deceased, however when we placed the call to the facility, that was clearly not the case and they... Read more »

Nina Whitehurst
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Nina Whitehurst
answered on Feb 23, 2022

It sounds like the life insurance company might have given up (a bit prematurely perhaps) and decided to go ahead and escheat the life insurance proceeds to the state. Go to this website for the New York unclaimed funds department and look for the name of the life insurance beneficiary:... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Probate for New York on
Q: Can a sole executor of a will (also a beneficiary) sell real property without the other beneficiaries approval ?

Both parties have equal share of real property stated in will.

Bonnie Lawston
PREMIUM
Bonnie Lawston
answered on Jan 19, 2022

The executor has the right and obligation to administer the estate which generally means selling the real property as soon as reasonable possible and appropriate. The executor must do what’s right for the estate and maximize the inheritance no matter who is the beneficiary.

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