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Rhode Island Probate Questions & Answers
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
PREMIUM
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... Read 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
Albin Moser
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... Read 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
PREMIUM
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... Read more »

Albin Moser
Albin Moser
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... Read 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... Read 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... Read 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... Read 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... Read 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:... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: Its my deceased Dad account of only 1500 part of pr obate?
Neville Bedford
Neville Bedford
answered on Dec 27, 2017

Sorry for your loss. Consult with a local probate attorney to review all of the facts (and review his will if he had one) and decide if his estate shall have to be probated. If the $1500 is the only asset, it may go through as a small estate and there is a simplified process for that type of case.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: My two sisters inherited my mothers house and my mother bequested

Me the sum of twenty thousand dollars. They said my mom's money in her estate was only twenty six thousand dollars and they used it up on the funeral and utility bills of the house for a year after my mothers passing. Can I force My sisters to sell the house and pay me my bequest?

Kenneth V Zichi
Kenneth V Zichi
answered on Dec 3, 2017

This depends on how the will was written. If the house were given as a specific bequest, then no, probably not. If the money were given as a specific bequest and the house as a 'residual' item, then maybe, but it depends on the nature of the expenses paid.

Bottom line, you need...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: My mother passed in Rhode Island in Dec. 2016. I have two other sisters, one became the executor.

of my mother's estate My mother named me in her will and bequested me the sum of $20,000, which my sister tells me I'm not going to get because there's no money in my mother's accounts. The hearing to close the estate, is in 7 days and don't agree with the accounting that... Read more »

Kenneth V Zichi
Kenneth V Zichi
answered on Dec 3, 2017

You've asked this question twice. Please see my previous answer.

-- This answer is offered for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or create an attorney/client relationship.

I am licensed to practice in Michigan only. Please seek competent local...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: Thank you so much for your time! Is an attorney required or can she file on her own?

My friend basically has nothing! She needs these funds to payoff the loan she borrowed for the services she had for her brother and then her sister 4 days later. If there is a chance I can help w/o an attorney (no disrespect), please advise. Again, thank you for time and consideration.

R.J. Connelly III
PREMIUM
R.J. Connelly III
answered on Oct 14, 2017

technically an attorney is rarely required, but (a loaded question) is always a good idea. essential if it is a contested matter.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: My friend's brother was due proceeds from an accident. Does she have to become admin? Proceeds 10k

No Will in place. Does this fall under Intestate Succession Law?

R.J. Connelly III
PREMIUM
R.J. Connelly III
answered on Oct 14, 2017

Short answer-yes for all probate assets ( without joint owners or beneficiary designations)

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Real Estate Law and Probate for Rhode Island on
Q: I just got a call from my stepmother in R.I who married my father a few days before he died asking me to sign papers ...

She stated the papers would be emailed to me since I live in Florida and can not be at the closing and i would be signing over my rights to the house so she could sell it...She had stated shortly after his death there was no will and nothing was left to me so why would i need to do this? She has... Read more »

Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III
answered on Sep 22, 2017

If your father died without a will, his wife and his children would divide his property among them according to the state's laws of succession. In my state, for example, the wife would take half and his children would split the other half. Thus, in order to sell the property, the wife would... Read more »

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