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Colorado Estate Planning Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Contracts, Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Colorado on
Q: Can a landlord sell the property you're renting, if you have a standing year lease?

This is actually the second time our landlord has done this. We live in a duplex, and our land lord posted it for sell without notifying us. What happens when it sells and changes hands?

Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Dec 3, 2019

Yes a landlord can sell the property. The buyer must honor your lease.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Colorado on
Q: My mother who is 85 years old is selling her home she has lived in for over 45 years.

it was purchased for $33,000 and is selling for $420,000. In February of this year, she purchased a condo with my husband and I for $410,000. Her name is on the loan but it wasn't on the title. So we did a Quit Claim Deed to put her name on the title. She will be living in the condo by herself... Read more »

Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Nov 1, 2019

There USED to be a rule allowing taxpayers to defer capital gain on the sale of a house by purchasing a more expensive house within two years. That rule was repealed in 1997. So the purchase of the condo makes no difference.

The new rule allows single taxpayers to permanently avoid paying...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Colorado on
Q: I'm divorced. Does my ex still get everything in my will and make medical decisions for me? Who is my next of kin now?

Will Colorado still consider my ex my next of kin even though we're divorced? Would it go to my teenage daughter? She's not old enough to make medical decisions for me if I'm incapacitated.

Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Oct 29, 2019

You are asking really good questions. The bottom line is that divorce is one of those events that should trigger an update of your existing estate plan. Schedule an appointment with an estate planning attorney and, in the meantime, be thinking about who you will want to nominate as the guardian... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Colorado on
Q: If my father was a beneficiary of a will before his death, am I now the beneficiary when that estate sales property?

My father was in my grandmas will upon her death in 2015. The estate has been sitting with real property. My father passed in December of 2018. I am the executor of his estate. Am I entitled to my father's portion of my grandmother's estate and listed in her will? Or is my father's portion... Read more »

Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Oct 15, 2019

Most likely your father lived long enough for his inheritance to vest in him but the only way to know for certain is to review your grandmother’s will. Whether you inherit from your father and to what extent depends on what his will says or, if he did not have a will, what next of kin survived... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Colorado on
Q: Is there a legal time limit for an executor to close an estate and make disbursements in Colorado?

We have been waiting 22 mos with it not contested or in probate. Is there a time limit law?

Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Oct 1, 2019

Probate should be opened within three years after the date of death, but there are exceptions to this rule. The important thing for you to know is if the executor of the will has not opened a probate by now, there is nothing to prevent any other interested party (such as an heir) from opening a... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Colorado on
Q: To be a valid self proving will in Colorado, are a notary and two witnesses required or only a notary?
Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Sep 6, 2019

Two witnesses, a notary, and a self-proving affidavit.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Colorado on
Q: How difficult would it be to contest a will in Colorado where the deceased had wanted specific changes made?

He talked about wanting specific items to go to other people after having a falling out with the original recipient. He verbally told people and wrote it down but never got it back to the lawyer to rewrite the will

Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Aug 1, 2019

Have a probate attorney review those writings. If they were entirely or mostly in his handwriting they might qualify and halographic wills and would be enforceable.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Contracts and Probate for Colorado on
Q: how Much time does an executor have to settle the estate?

My grandparents died 5 years ago and had a house out of state that hasn’t sold. It is listed online as “off market” and we still have not received the inheritance from the executor. Do they have a time limit on when this needs to be paid out? It’s been 5 years and it still is not settled.

Bruce Alexander Minnick
Bruce Alexander Minnick answered on Jun 17, 2019

There is no set time for an estate to be wound up and paid out; it depends on the size of the estate and other factors. The executor (or personal representative) of a last will has a fiduciary responsibility to protect the assets entrusted to them and to insure that everything is done legally so as... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate and Estate Planning for Colorado on
Q: Does the money in my mother's trust belong to the beneficiaries as soon as she dies or does it remain in trust

until each beneficiary receives their yearly distribution until the money runs out? Is there something official that can help back me up on that?

John Hyland Barrett III
John Hyland Barrett III answered on Apr 22, 2019

This depends on the terms of the trust. The trust document controls. It may call for distribution or it may remain in the trust. You have to review the trust statement to see what it says.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Colorado on
Q: If an estate has not been filed for more than five years after the death, is that legal?

My mother in-law helped us secure a mortgage for a home we shared with her. The loan is only in her name. We have paid for ever bill in association with the property and loan. Now my father in-law who doesn’t and hasn’t lived with us discovered the equity is in our home is sizable and is... Read more »

Donald C Eby
Donald C Eby answered on Feb 28, 2019

Ultimately, someone will have to Probate the Mother's Estate. If you have a lot of equity at stake I recommend you talk to an attorney to protect you in this process.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law and Probate for Colorado on
Q: Does my mom have to sell my dad's estate after probate? He had 3 kids prior to marrying my mom & they then had 4 kids.

My dad passed away June 2018. He had no will, only his name is on the house (which is paid off). My mom lives in the house as she was married to him for 39+ years. My dad had 3 kids prior to marrying my mom, then 4 kids with my mom. All 7 'kids' are over 21 years old. We all agree she will be... Read more »

Donald C Eby
Donald C Eby answered on Jan 14, 2019

It is not likely that a probate under these facts will result in a forced sale. But, if the estate is contentious, i.e. someone wants money, your Mother should hire an attorney to assist and defend her.

1 Answer | Asked in Personal Injury, Car Accidents, Estate Planning and Family Law for Colorado on
Q: Can a relative be given Power of Attorney, to help another relative in a different state.

This is because of a car-pedestrian accident. The injured party needs to hire a PI lawyer, and he isn't well versed in claims and because of the injury, a family member needs to be able to be the contact to assist the lawyer and make medical decisions. Is the dual state a problem?

Robert D. Kreisman
Robert D. Kreisman answered on Jan 3, 2019

The first issue is whether the injured party is of sound mind and memory and/or has the capacity to sign a POA. If the injured person hires an attorney, then that attorney would be empowered by the attorney-client contract in most instances to handle most of the issues you raise excepting the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Colorado on
Q: who has the rights to a house?

My mother in law owned a house jointly with her husband from a second marriage who passed 3 years ago. The house was re-titled into her name and she refinanced the mortgage. If she passes instate, does the house pass equally to her daughters? Or will it go equally to the daughters and to the son of... Read more »

Ashley Dean Powell
Ashley Dean Powell answered on Dec 20, 2018

Short Answer: If the son of her deceased husband was never actually adopted by your mother-in-law, then there is a chance that such un-adopted stepchild will not participate in her estate as one of her own children.

Long Answer: If your mother-in-law is the sole owner of the house and she...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts, Estate Planning, Real Estate Law and Probate for Colorado on
Q: Is joint tenancy the same as right of survivorship and do quitclaims within the group change the conveyance upon death?

My understanding of Colorado law is that only the last sole survivor of a joint tenancy can be the grantor of property to a beneficiary upon his/her passing. But if one or more original owners quitclaims their portion to others within the original group of joint tenants, does the right of... Read more »

Donald C Eby
Donald C Eby answered on Dec 16, 2018

The chain of title will need to be examined to definitively answer your question.

There is a likelihood based our the facts stated that the Right of Survivorship remains valid.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Family Law for Colorado on
Q: When someone passes & "estate will"goes to X #of kids but 1 has passed what happens to the deceased kid's share?

The child that died had 1 child, does the deceased share go to his son or to the other siblings?

Ashley Dean Powell
Ashley Dean Powell answered on Dec 4, 2018

The answer somewhat depends on a variety of factors, such as whether the will intended a class gift (for example, "to all my kids") or was a list of specific devisees (recipients) of the gift. The specific provisions of the will (did it clarify alternative recipient or how to deal with the death of... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Colorado on
Q: What happens if my adult children pass away without a will? As their mother, does their property all go to me?
Ashley Dean Powell
Ashley Dean Powell answered on Nov 9, 2018

Yes, if your child did not have any estate planning, did not have a spouse, did not have a properly recorded designated beneficiary agreement, and did not have any children, then the intestacy laws would probably put the surviving parents first in line to inherit.

The details: Your adult...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Colorado on
Q: I have been told that it is necessary to get a legal financial separation so that we can both make our wills. True?

My husband and his lawyer informed me that since we are a blended family, that we need to be financially separated for my husband and I to make our separate wills. This doesn't make sense to me, and has caused so much stress that we are at the point of a full divorce. Thank you for helping!

Ashley Dean Powell
Ashley Dean Powell answered on Oct 25, 2018

I'm not sure what exactly your attorney might mean by a "legal financial separation," but it's probably not absolutely required. And you shouldn't let that advice break up your marriage.

Sometimes, we attorneys can tend to be "black and white" or overly analytical in our advice (or even...
Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Colorado on
Q: A family trust gave us funds to assist in the purchase of a home. After the purchase they filed a lien on the property?

The trust demanded a promissory note and deed be signed after the purchase of the home. They said to ignore the promissory note and not to worry about the details of the deed (which incorporated the note and referenced it)! We declined / refused as the details were not anything discussed, nor... Read more »

Donald C Eby
Donald C Eby answered on Oct 16, 2018

Based on your facts this is likely a spurious lien. You have no obligation to agree to new terms after the gift or loan was delivered. You should contact an attorney to assist you in removing the lien.

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Colorado on
Q: My uncle was a conservator for my father who was disabled via a TBI. My uncle created a irrevocable trust for me.

I am the sole child. My uncle stands to be beneficiary if I die. He somehow did a court order that created the trust(?) it is outside the norm for the situation. Do I have any recourse to remedy the situation?

Ashley Dean Powell
Ashley Dean Powell answered on Oct 4, 2018

If you wanted to challenge something about your uncle's representation of your father's interest as his conservator or something about the trust specifically, you probably want to consult a Colorado attorney (ideally one in the same county where your father and uncle live or where the trust is... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Elder Law for Colorado on
Q: Do estranged family members have to be notified when my father passes away? He demands they know nothing about his death

I was recently made head of my dads will, estate power or attorney etc. His wishes are that his estranged daughters (been absent from his life since 2010). Not be notified of his passing and his will specifically states they are to get nothing. No major assets, Money or property. Just personal... Read more »

Richard Winblad
Richard Winblad answered on Sep 20, 2018

If a probate is filed your state will likely require that they be notified as an heir even if the Will disinherited them. Check with a Colorado attorney.

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