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New Jersey Estate Planning Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for New Jersey on
Q: Hi, we just had a will drawn up. It was signed by us, 2 witnesses, and our NJ attorney. The attorney said we don't

need a separate Notary or seal because in NJ he is considered a Notary and his signature is enough. My research supports this but also seems to indicate we should get it additionally notarized. Please advise. Thank you.

Morris Leo Greb
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Morris Leo Greb
answered on Jan 23, 2023

See my answer to your previous question.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for New Jersey on
Q: Should a NJ will have a notary seal in addition to NJ lawyer and 2 witness signatures?
Morris Leo Greb
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Morris Leo Greb
answered on Jan 23, 2023

If it is a self proving will which is being acknowledged by a notary public then in that event a seal should be affixed. If the will is acknowledged by a NJ attorney, only the attorney's signature is required.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Family Law for New Jersey on
Q: When can I use my power of attorney

I have full power of attorney of my elderly mom. She is not capable of handling finances on her own but my sisters have brainwashed her into selling her home as I've been busy with my career. My mom doesn't want to believe she is incapable of making financial decisions and my... Read more »

Morris Leo Greb
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Morris Leo Greb
answered on Dec 17, 2022

You have the right to exercise any power that is listed in the Power of Attorney. If you have a specific question how broad is the Power of Attorney's language, please consult with an attorney in your jurisdiction.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for New Jersey on
Q: What happen when an initial deed is showered in April 84 and records show it was assigned in May 1984 .

Both companies are no longer around to show what happen to that assignment . However in 1986 a mortgage is showed and discharged with another company that’s no longer around. Reached out to company that it merged with and they have no record of the property. Through research all patterns show... Read more »

Morris Leo Greb
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Morris Leo Greb
answered on Nov 22, 2022

Speak to a real estate attorney. There is a statutory provision to resolve this issue.

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law and Probate for New Jersey on
Q: Joint Tenancy between Parent & Child Parent dies Will has Child as Executor; Beneficiary 100%.Does will need Probate?

Parent and Child is on the Deed . Parent dies and left Will with Child as Executor and 100 Beneficiary. Is there any reason the Will would have to be probated ? Doesn’t the survivor assumes 100 percent of the property is Deeded to both?

Leonard R. Boyer
Leonard R. Boyer
answered on Nov 25, 2022

There is no way to avoid probate and you will have to have a new deed recorded. Whether or not there is a mortgage may raise additional issues. You really need to have a virtual or in-person consultation with an experienced attorney. Good luck.

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for New Jersey on
Q: I'm executor of an estate & bonded. I need to have the estate discharged and the bond terminated. Do I need a lawyer?

Is this something I can do on my own to save money?

Morris Leo Greb
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Morris Leo Greb
answered on Nov 14, 2022

If you are familar wiyh the requirements you may represent yourself. However, my advise is to retain the services of an experienced estate attorney.

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Family Law and Elder Law for New Jersey on
Q: NJ: 92 y.o. mom asking for legal document stating my husband & I are NOT RESPONSIBLE for paying her debt/medical bills

In New Jersey: 92 year old mom asking for legal document stating my husband & I (we are both over 55) are NOT RESPONSIBLE for paying ANY of her debt, bills, medical bills, nursing home bills, etc. Nor will we participate in some kind of "Trust" she is setting up. Oldest brother is... Read more »

Morris Leo Greb
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Morris Leo Greb
answered on Nov 12, 2022

You will be responsible for all debts incurred by your mother if you signed as a co-applicant when your mother applied for credit cards. You will also be responsible for all credit extended for which you cosigned. In addition you along with siblings may be responsible for debts incurred if your... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for New Jersey on
Q: What happens if I die to the ownership of house?

My father wants to have my family (my spouse, 2 children and myself move into his home). We would sell our own home. He stated he will be adding my name to the deed. Not sure if it would be sole survivorship. In either situation, what would happen if I passed away? Would my children and spouse get... Read more »

Matthew Schutz
Matthew Schutz
answered on Nov 12, 2022

The answer to your question depends on the interest that you will be getting in the new deed that your father is preparing. If the deed is a joint tenancy with the right of survivorship, then assuming you survive your father, you will get the entire property. If it is a tenancy in common, then you... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for New Jersey on
Q: Three months of silence, so how do I handle a non-responsive probate lawyer?

I am one of two beneficiaries of an estate. We're at five years and counting, and I have been represented by a NJ lawyer on this matter as I live out of state. I was notified of new assets one year ago by executor via my lawyer, who was unable to provide any additional details. Assets entered... Read more »

Morris Leo Greb
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Morris Leo Greb
answered on Nov 9, 2022

Contact the Office of Attorney Ethics at the NJ Supreme Court and ask for assistance with obtaining a response from the attorney.

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for New Jersey on
Q: MIL died jan 8th with over 100k credit card debt none of the creditors have made a claim against the estate do we pay?

we have many credit card companies and debt collectors sending letters of condolance and saying she owed money but it is past the 9 months and we do not have enough funds to pay them all, can we distribute what is left legally to the heirs?

Morris Leo Greb
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Morris Leo Greb
answered on Nov 9, 2022

Debts of the decedent must be paid y the Estate before distribution the the beneficiaries. If any or all of the beneficiaries signed the credit appiication, that person will be personally liable for the debt.

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for New Jersey on
Q: my mother had passed away, im the eldest son, what are my options to her estate

there was an old will, but my sister said she cant find it. i need help because my mom said the house was mine but my sister is trying to scam me from it. is there a way to find the original will?

H. Scott Aalsberg Esq.
H. Scott Aalsberg Esq.
answered on Nov 6, 2022

If you know the lawyer she used you could call that lawyer to see if he/she still has a copy of the will.

1 Answer | Asked in Elder Law and Estate Planning for New Jersey on
Q: My mother in law died over a year ago. Her estate was insolvent- she owed much more in debts than she had in assets.

My husband is her only heir. He and I declined to take on any assets (namely her home and car) and we declined to administer the estate. A debtor is now suing for foreclosure and we are receiving endless summonses because we are named as heirs/interested parties. Do we need to answer these summons... Read more »

Morris Leo Greb
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Morris Leo Greb
answered on Sep 27, 2022

Whether or not you are willing to accept or be responsible for any interest in the state, you have an interest which needs to be addressed in the foreclosure action. You will continue to receive information. If you do nothing, at some pont in time, the plaintiff will seek the entry of a default in... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for New Jersey on
Q: Is the executor of a Real Estate Trust required to act quickly in selling the home? Should they notify us along the way?

Real Estate trust in NJ

What is the timeframe to sell? Should we be notified of the listing of home or price?

Morris Leo Greb
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Morris Leo Greb
answered on Sep 23, 2022

The executor has time to sell the property when the executor feels it is the best time for the benefit of the Estate.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Tax Law for New Jersey on
Q: If I claim my deceased father's property & he's in debt, will I become responsible? Or is it just taxable income?

If it is a debt will I become required to pay his debt if I am heir? If not a debt & income how can this effect my tax liability?

H. Scott Aalsberg Esq.
H. Scott Aalsberg Esq.
answered on Aug 9, 2022

I suggest you setup a consultation with a lawyer. You have more than a simple question here and a lot will depend on who you are in the will. For example are you executor or just a beneficiary. As for tax liability that should be asked to a CPA

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Family Law and Estate Planning for New Jersey on
Q: How does an inmate get a general power of attorney signed over

The form already filled out. Can I just get two witnesses inside to sign or how would I get something notarized while incarcerated

Michael A. Smolensky
Michael A. Smolensky
answered on Aug 5, 2022

Logistics will require coordination with prison/jail security. Generally speaking if one is serious about the execution of a power of attorney or any other estate planning documents, then one ought to seriously retain an attorney to draft and oversee the execution of the instruments.

2 Answers | Asked in Family Law, Landlord - Tenant and Estate Planning for New Jersey on
Q: If my older brother says he is power of attorney for my mother who has dementia doesn’t he have to prove that to me?

I live in my moms place in New Jersey and have been for 38 yrs now he’s trying to kick me out since he says he’s power of attorney!! If he isn’t poa can he legally do this to me ? He won’t show me the document that he’s power of attorney either

Morris Leo Greb
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Morris Leo Greb
answered on Jul 13, 2022

Yes, he should show you proof of his authority as deputy under the power of attorney. If your mother is suffering from dementia and has been diagnosed, the power may not be valid if executed when you mother was not considered to be capable of executing legal documents. You should speak to an estate... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Family Law and Health Care Law for New Jersey on
Q: Is there a simple template or fill-in last will and testament that I can get to fill out for a relative?
Leonard R. Boyer
Leonard R. Boyer
answered on Jul 12, 2022

That would be practicing law without a license. "Template" legal documents are rarely worth the paper they are printed on. If your friend cannot afford a private attorney, then that person needs to contact NJLS or law school legal clinics.

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for New Jersey on
Q: A parent leaves furniture in a siblings house upon death furniture is not in will is that furniture legally theirs
Morris Leo Greb
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Morris Leo Greb
answered on Jul 7, 2022

If it were a gift, yes. If a bailment, perhaps. Speak to Estate attorney.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Family Law for New Jersey on
Q: Question about family estate.

When I was 13 or so, my grandmother passed away. For perspective, I am 21 now. She left the family with an estate worth X amount. Seeing as though I was only 13, I was never contacted about anything regarding the estate and never knew anything about it. That being said, the estate took many years... Read more »

Richard Diamond
Richard Diamond
answered on Jul 5, 2022

The short answer is that the estate documents should have referenced the appointment of someone on your behalf since you were a minor and entitled to receipt of benefits under the estate plan. I dont know what complications took place causing an 8-year delay in winding up the estate but that may... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for New Jersey on
Q: In NJ, if there are two Memorandums of Tangible Personal Property, does the most recent override the first one?

One was handwritten around 2007, maybe earlier. The other one was written in 2014. The first list contains a necklace that was given to me, by my mother in 2014. My mother passed Dec, 2021. The other sister says it’s still part of the list and wants it back. I strongly disagree.

H. Scott Aalsberg Esq.
H. Scott Aalsberg Esq.
answered on Jun 26, 2022

Sounds like you have the item and it was on the later list so it sounds like you have the right to keep it. But a lawyer would need to review all the documents and the estate documents issued by the probate court to tell you anything with certainty.

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