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Colorado Probate Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Colorado on
Q: A check for unclaimed funds made payable to me on behalf of heirs of my dad. Am I able to deposit this in my own acct?

Hi, my father passed away about 16 years ago. I visited https://colorado.findyourunclaimedproperty.com/ to search for unclaimed assets, and I found some in his name. He did not leave a will, and there wasn't an obituary. I was executor and sole heir of his estate because I am his only child. I had... Read more »

Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Feb 22, 2020

Yes, the state made the check payable that way to impress upon you the obligation to share the funds with your dad's other theoretical heirs, but as there are none, you can safely deposit the funds in your bank account and you need not worry about having to share it with other heirs.

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law and Probate for Colorado on
Q: I have been on probation for 3 months can i ask to do jail time and be done with probation
Courtney Edwards
Courtney Edwards answered on Feb 21, 2020

It depends. In some circumstances probation is mandatory to ensure you comply with a treatment program, for example in domestic violence and DUI/DWAI cases. Be careful what you wish for though- I've seen this request made before and the judge put the person in jail for the maximum sentence which... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Colorado on
Q: Post death, if secured asset is returned but FMV is below debt, does it get paid off before unsecured credit card debt?

In estate after a death, do secured assets that go to auction but fail to raise funds to pay off balance get paid off before unsecured debt or should they be treated equally? Credit cards are clamoring for money, but so is company that financed deceased loved ones camp trailer for delta between... Read more »

Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Feb 21, 2020

That delta is referred to as a “deficiency” and it is an unsecured debt with the same priority as other unsecured debts such as credit cards.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Probate and Tax Law for Colorado on
Q: I had shares in my family farm that has been handed down for 4 generations. My brother bought my shares of the farm.

Do I have to pay taxes on the money I got from my farm inheritance?

D. Mathew Blackburn
D. Mathew Blackburn answered on Jan 24, 2020

You don't pay tax on inherited property. But it sounds as if you inherited the property then sold it which is different.

You would need to determine the basis in the shares when you received them and compare that to the sales price to determine if any gain exists.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Colorado on
Q: My father had a living trust for the property. During the process of getting him Medicaid the consultant we hired had me

Do a quit claim on the property and file it with the county. The mortgage , insurance and utilities are in his name. He had some debt as well medical mostly. Do we have to go thru probate and do we have to pay his debt off.

He has a will and it is not contested.

Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Jan 15, 2020

It is not possible to answer your question without reviewing the trust, the deed, and other things. You should contact a trust administration attorney. Most likely a probate will not be required but some kind of trust administration will be required.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Colorado on
Q: Can I collect an old judgment in Probate when the defendant dies? He is in Aspen, Colorado, with a district court case.

1984 awarded $18,883. He didn't have money back then but has a couple of stores, businesses and properties now.

Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Dec 21, 2019

You can if the judgement has not expired. District court judgments are valid for 20 years, so unless you renewed it for another 20 years before it expired in 2004, you can no longer collect on it. If the judgement was issued by a county court, it was only valid for six years, so you would have... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Colorado on
Q: Can a probation officer make threats against a mentally disabled person
Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Dec 18, 2019

Please repost your question in the criminal law category. "Probate" refers to the administration of decedents' estates. Probate attorneys usually know little to nothing about probation matters.

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 Family Law and Probate for Colorado on
Q: my surviving brother did not include me in the probate process when our younger brother passed away.... this was in 99'

Over the years he refuses to allow me to see the autopsy results. Also this same brother masterminded a banking fraud with the brother that passed away, when our mother had passed away in 1992, he included my mothers landlady in this.... they forged and cashed a check from my mothers account at her... Read more »

Sabra M. Janko
Sabra M. Janko answered on Oct 26, 2019

It really depends on what the will provided for and whether he violated any fiduciary duties. An attorney would have to see the will to advise you.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Colorado on
Q: Executor is not carrying out Will according to deceased wishes. What is recourse ?
Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Sep 10, 2019

Petition the court to replace the executor due to the executor's wrong doing. This is not a do-it-yourself project. You will need the assistance of a local probate attorney.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Colorado on
Q: Hi - Father died, has a Will. Executor of Will is not carrying out the Will per deceased wishes.

Father died, has a legal and binding Will. Executor of Will (1st born son) is not carrying out the Will per deceased wishes. As a result, other siblings not receiving distributions according to the Will. What is our recourse ?

Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Sep 10, 2019

You can hire an attorney to petition the probate court to have the executor replaced due to his wrongdoing. If there is not a probate already opened, then petition to have yourself or one of the "good" siblings appointed as the executor and probate the will.

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 Criminal Law and Probate for Colorado on
Q: my friend's wife died and a young man that grew up with them hired an attorney and claimed to be adopted by his wife!

my friend's wife died and a young man that grew up with them hired an attorney and claimed to be adopted by his wife! It turned out later that he was NOT ADOPTED! Is the one claiming to be adopted committing fraud? And, is it provable in a court of law? (Colorado)?

Brian K. McHugh
Brian K. McHugh answered on Mar 24, 2019

It could be fraud, but it would depend on what, if anything, he did in the false capacity as the son of the deceased. It could also be Criminal Impersonation, again depending on the facts.

As to whether it is provable, it would depend on what evidence was uncovered during the investigation...
Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Divorce, Family Law, Real Estate Law and Probate for Colorado on
Q: if a wife leaves the home "joint tenancy" then husband passes is wifes new common law husband entitled to the property

my mom committed adultery and left the marital home owned in joint tenancy 6 years prior to my dads death, my mom passed away 6 years later, both names are still on house deed/mortgage, they have 3 adult children, (neither had a will) moms boy friend claiming common law husband is trying to take... Read more »

John Hyland Barrett III
John Hyland Barrett III answered on Feb 28, 2019

Since the house was owned in joint tenancy, your mother became the sole owner upon your father's death. Upon her death, it passes to her children if she did not have a will, and was not married. However, if she was married at the time of her death, it passes to her husband. Her "boyfriend" would... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Colorado on
Q: My mom passed in 2010. She has real estate that we have been paying taxes on. No written will. Died in AZ, land in CO.

My siblings and I want to share the land. It’s vacant land worth less than $20k. The land is in Colorado and she passed away in Arizona. There is no written will and the property is still and solely is in her name. What do we do and where do we begin?

Brynne Gant
Brynne Gant answered on Feb 16, 2019

To transfer real property (even vacant land) to heirs, you'll need to open probate in Colorado (or what's called "Ancillary Probate" if probate was already opened in AZ). The Colorado Courts website has some good information and instructions on how to do this:... Read more »

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 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.

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