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Rhode Island Probate Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: Can the executor of a family trust take everything of value from the residence not mentioned in the will.

10 beneficiaries, executor included. Automobiles, jewels, cash, antiques, televisions etc .

Albin Moser
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answered on Nov 14, 2023

No, the executor of the probate estate or the trustee of the family trust does not have the right to take everything not mentioned in the will, unless the intention is to hold it for distribution to the rightful heirs of the estate and beneficiaries of the family trust. The executor is the person... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law and Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: What is the current law in Rhode Island in regards to a life estate pertaining to nieces and nephews?
Albin Moser
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answered on Oct 6, 2023

Anyone can grant a life estate to anyone, regardless of whether or not the grantor and grantee are related. If the deed is valid then the life estate is valid. If someone were to try to challenge the deed on the argument that they are a closer relation, their closer relation is not enough in itself... View More

3 Answers | Asked in Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: How can find out if I'm mentioned in a will without the executor or anyone else finding out?

I've always wondered if my Grandparents "disinherited me" (long story!). It's more of a personal concern than financial. I'm financially independent and don't need or expect anything, but the situation is strange enough that I'd like to "sneak behind the... View More

Albin Moser
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answered on Sep 14, 2023

If your grandparents are still living then no. If the maker of the will is still living then no one can read the will without the maker's permission. If your grandparents are deceased then maybe: Upon the maker's death the will would be probated, if there is any probate estate. Those... View More

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: Is a General Release form that's signed by me (and witness) a binding document?

I'm an estate beneficiary and was promised by the probate attorney that I would receive a check for a certain amount upon my signing (with witness) the General Release form per Rhode Island Probate Court. I performed as asked and mailed the form back. The attorney later emailed me stating that... View More

Albin Moser
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answered on Aug 22, 2023

You are bound by the release you signed only if you get the money stated in it. The attorney for the executor or administrator is saying no, you won't get that amount of money, you will get something less. That means that the release is not binding on you. Unless you sign a release for the new... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law and Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: Hi, I am not getting anywhere with accessing my late father's executor/wills order petition to dis. Is it open records?

I live in KY, but it was carried out in Rhode Island, and its hard to do things when your 1000+ miles away, and all the paper work is in a storage unit in RI, is there any other way i can go about finding out the information within it like the lawyers name? Something where i can get started??? Im... View More

Albin Moser
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answered on Aug 15, 2023

The petition and order you are looking for are in the records of the probate court for the town or city in which your father last resided. You can call the probate court for that town or city and speak to the probate clerk, ask for a copy of the records. Probate records are not usually available... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: If a house is in a revocable trust, upon death will ownership pass to the beneficiary without going into probate?
Albin Moser
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answered on Jul 2, 2023

Yes.

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: Quit claim question. What the ownership status for a house that we inherited from our mother?

What is the ownership status for a house that we inherited from our mother? She passed away 20 years ago and my brother took control of her house but the two of us never followed through with the quit claim process. Do we legally own the house jointly?

Andrew Bilodeau
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Andrew Bilodeau
answered on Nov 18, 2022

You still have an ownership interest that you can assert. If a probate was never opened, one would need to be opened so that the property could be properly transferred to the rightful heirs. I would need more information - whether there was a will or a trust, and how the property was deeded prior... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: What is a universal appointment bond. If the bond says $300,000 what does that mean and why. Thank you for your help
Albin Moser
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answered on Oct 15, 2022

It means that if the executor or administrator were to fail in his duties to the beneficiaries of the probate estate, then the beneficiaries can claim against the bond up to the amount of $300,000. Often the bond is a personal bond with no surety, meaning it is given by the executor or... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: If my father's house was quit claimed to my brother in 2019 and my dad passed in 2022, does the house go through probate

My brother has lived there most of his life, but never took over any financial or other responsibility for the house while my father was alive

Andrew Bilodeau
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Andrew Bilodeau
answered on Aug 17, 2022

If your father conveyed his entire interest in his house to your brother then the house would not be part of the probate estate because the house was not owned by your father at the time of his death.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: My mom passed away on 2-23-2022. How can I obtain a copy of her Will.

My mom recently passed away. She did have a Will. My step father is refusing to share her Will with her children. I know there's certain things that belonged to my mom that she inherited from my grandmother that was to be passed along to me when my mom passed. My step father denied me seeing... View More

Albin Moser
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answered on Mar 5, 2022

You can petition in the probate court of the city or town where your mother lived, and demand the production of the will. Your stepfather would be court-ordered to produce it.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: If money is willed to 2 sons to be split evenly, but 1 passed away before their mom, does the other son get all of it?

Or would the dead son's half get passed to his heirs? The wording on the will is just that the remainder of her money gets split evenly between son 1 and son 2.

Neville Bedford
Neville Bedford
answered on Mar 31, 2021

Get a copy of that will and make an appointment to meet with your local probate attorney to discern whether the intention of the testator is per capita, or per stirpes.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: If the deceased had 2 sisters and both have children, but there is only one surviving sister . How are funds distributed

No will exits, Do funds go directly to the surviving sister or does it get split with the deceased sister's children ?

Neville Bedford
Neville Bedford
answered on Jul 6, 2020

Sympathies for your loss. http://webserver.rilin.state.ri.us/Statutes/TITLE33/33-1/33-1-1.HTM will give you the answer you seek. Do yourself a favor and meet with a local attorney to explain the rules of descent and administration of an intestacy petition in the probate court. They will be able to... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: Father passed away, had no will, wife received everything. She passed and gave everything to her kids, what can I do?

My Father passed away in 2012, his next of kin was his wife, so she received his Veterans Burial Flag. She had passed away in 2019, I just found out. She gave my Father’s flag to her grandson, I was my Father’s only biological child and they had no children together. With my Father’s death, I... View More

Neville Bedford
Neville Bedford
answered on Jul 6, 2020

Consult with a local attorney to review the case that was likely filed in the town where they passed. If the will was filed and no objection was timely filed, you may not have a remedy. For peace of mind, the consultation may be worth your while.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: What happens if executor of a will in RI refuses to initiate small estates probate or give it to the secondary executor?

Deceased brother's girlfriend is 1st executor & my mom is 2nd. Girlfriend refuses to give the will to the small estates probate court & refuses to give it to my mom who will file the petition. The estate only consists of a very small bank acct. Girlfriend made sure she got his major... View More

Neville Bedford
Neville Bedford
answered on Apr 15, 2020

Your mom would do well to hire the attorney who gave her the advise, or any attorney of her choosing.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: If my grandparents have adult guardianship of me and I get married does that terminate the gaurdianship
Neville Bedford
Neville Bedford
answered on Jan 31, 2020

It depends on what the terms of the guardianship are. Talk to them about it.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate and Estate Planning for Rhode Island on
Q: How do you find out if sister left something to her brother if there is no will? We have reason to believe she did.

The situation is- Married couple, Wife dies totally unexpectedly -she handled all the finances and made all the money and did not trust husband with finances. After her death Husband made his nephew beneficiary. Husband dies...does nephew get all of her stuff too? He came in and took all the... View More

Neville Bedford
Neville Bedford
answered on Jan 16, 2019

If nephew is the beneficiary of the Husband's will, he will have to file the will in the probate court. Meet with and retain an experienced probate attorney to assist in your quest.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: How do I get a copy of a wiil for someone who died in Rhode Island?
Neville Bedford
Neville Bedford
answered on Jan 16, 2019

Stop by the probate court in the town where they passed. If you are staying in Florida, hire an attorney to do that for you.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: Was told to expect inheritance. Over a year later, the will is still not probated. The widower doesn't disclose lawyer.

Shortly before she died, a friend informed me I was to inherit her house and business, which she shared with her brother. More than a year later, the will still hasn't been probated and the widower, who is in his 80s, refuses to disclose the lawyers handling the case. What are our options? We... View More

Neville Bedford
Neville Bedford
answered on Jun 9, 2018

GO to the town hall where the death occurred. If the case is not yet open, consider retaining an attorney to assist you in navigating this, sometimes complex, process.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: My Dad's probate has stalled. I've been waiting for the lawyer to send a document for my approval. Four months later,

I'm still waiting. I've called but he doesn't return my call. What's my next step to resolve this. It's been 1.5 years since probate started in RI.

Neville Bedford
Neville Bedford
answered on May 27, 2018

Make an appointment to go see them - or consult with another probate attorney.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: What's the breakdown in RI is husband dies without a will. The wife gets the 1st 50,000 or 100,000?
Neville Bedford
Neville Bedford
answered on Jan 11, 2018

The surviving spouse of a decedent who dies domiciled in this state has a right of election that is not defined in finite dollar amounts. Review Rhode Island intestacy laws at your leisure, and/or hire a practicing probate attorney to assist in the proceedings. see:... View More

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