Indiana Estate Planning Questions & Answers

Q: In IN, with no will who will my husbands assets go to with one adult child from 1st marriage and two children with me.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Family Law for Indiana on
Answered on Feb 7, 2019
Alexander Florian Steciuch's answer
First off, you should consult with a probate or estate planning attorney in your area for legal advice. These situations should always be thoroughly reviewed by a probate or estate planning attorney, otherwise costly mistakes can be made.

Second, if your husband passes away without a will, he will be treated as having passed intestate. This means that his assets will be distributed according to Indiana laws rather than his wishes if he had had a will. Any assets that you own jointly...

Q: How long do you have to disclaim inheritance in Indiana? What if you are one of 3 trustees out of 5 beneficiaries?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Indiana on
Answered on Jan 21, 2019
Alexander Florian Steciuch's answer
Disclaiming and inheritance is not the same as renouncing your position as an executor or a trustee. You can disclaim a part or whole of an inheritance. You can refuse to serve as the executor and choose to stay on as trustee. It is not an all or nothing situation.

Q: I have a deceased Father that I just learned about through DNA. The family is not forthcoming in any information .

1 Answer | Asked in Arbitration / Mediation Law and Estate Planning for Indiana on
Answered on Jan 14, 2019
James Whitney's answer
I can relate as I found my biological father through a combination of DNA and paper trail research long after he had deceased.

Unfortunately, those in our situation have no legal rights as heirs or children without initiating steps to solidify our status as a child of the father we found.

For my part, I filed a petition in court for a name change to include my biological father's name in my name. Thus, my name now, by court order, is Arthur James Wilcox Whitney. This has...

Q: Is it legal in the state of Indiana to be medical POA, financial POA, beneficiary in a will, and later executor of will?

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Estate Planning for Indiana on
Answered on Dec 4, 2018
Alexander Florian Steciuch's answer
Yes. There is nothing that prevents a single individual to act in all of these different capacities at once.

Q: My sister passed away and I'm her only amediate living family member ( sister). She did not have a will.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Indiana on
Answered on Nov 7, 2018
Alexander Florian Steciuch's answer
You should consult with a probate attorney for at least a consultation. He or she can best direct you after reviewing the entirety of the facts and situation that you are in. There may be non-probate methods available to you to claim what assets there are, including the insurance policy, especially if the estate is insolvent.

Q: I was awarded a monetary sum by my friends will.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Indiana on
Answered on Nov 7, 2018
Alexander Florian Steciuch's answer
If there is a probate estate opened and still open, you contact the personal representative of the estate asking for your distribution. If the personal representative does not respond or denies you, you retain counsel and have him or her petition the court to force the personal representative to respond. It's best to retain counsel and if that is not economically feasible for you, at least schedule a consultation to obtain legal advice after reviewing all of the facts, information and...

Q: Have some questions regarding my late husband's estate. I'm the executor of his estate and am in need of a few answers..

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Collections and Probate for Indiana on
Answered on Sep 25, 2018
Alexander Florian Steciuch's answer
Since you have already met with an attorney you should be asking your attorney these questions. Depending on what type of estate you have opened, your answer may vary.

Q: If my mother died and her brother is executor, how can I get a copy of the will?

1 Answer | Asked in Probate and Estate Planning for Indiana on
Answered on Aug 27, 2018
Alexander Florian Steciuch's answer
Easiest way is to ask the executor for a copy of the will. You can also look to see if the will has been deposited with the local court in the county of your mother's domicile or residence.

Q: My father had a last will n testament made up before he passed but didn't make it long enough to go have notorized.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Indiana on
Answered on Aug 15, 2018
Alexander Florian Steciuch's answer
Wills in Indiana do not have to be notarized. They do require two witnesses to be in the presence of the testator as they sign.

A small estate affidavit does not appoint you to be the executor of the estate. It is used to claim property that you are entitled to as an heir without the need for going through the probate process.

You may benefit from sitting down with a probate attorney to help you figure out what you need to do next.

Q: Should I contest final accounting of estate,numbers don't add up and there was a payment made that I don't agree with

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Indiana on
Answered on Aug 15, 2018
Alexander Florian Steciuch's answer
No one is going to be able to give you a solid answer without reviewing all of the available evidence. You should schedule a time to sit down with a probate litigation attorney with all the evidence you have and he or she can give you that recommendation.

Q: My mother owned a property joint tentants w ros and passed away leaving a will and including a quit claim deed that deed

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Indiana on
Answered on Aug 7, 2018
Alexander Florian Steciuch's answer
Joint tenants with rights of survivorship can have those rights severed if the property is transferred in part, such as if a person deeds their interest in the property as tenants in common.

You should sit down with a real estate attorney or a probate attorney as soon as possible to review all the necessary and relevant documents to obtain legal advice specific to your situation and possibly retain legal counsel.

Q: How much notice do you have to give a family member to vacate after a homeowner dies in Indiana?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Indiana on
Answered on Jul 30, 2018
Alexander Florian Steciuch's answer
I am sorry for your loss. If your mother was living with your grandmother and your mother refuses to leave the property, she will have to be evicted. That means going to the local courthouse, filing with the appropriate court and getting a court date to obtain a court order granting the trustee possession of the property.

Q: My uncle died in In May leaving a trust naming myself and my 4 cousins as beneficiaries. The PNC. bank is in Indiana.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Indiana on
Answered on Jul 24, 2018
Alexander Florian Steciuch's answer
No one is going to be able to give you an adequate answer here. You need to consult with an attorney experienced with trusts and trust litigation to review the trust terms and get the full account of what is occurring. If there is a quarrel with the other beneficiaries there could be litigation. Consult with a trust litigation attorney ASAP.

Q: what happens when my attorney dies, I am the personal representative of the estate.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Indiana on
Answered on Jul 23, 2018
Alexander Florian Steciuch's answer
Find another probate attorney in your area to review where you are at in the probate estate. He or she should be able to direct you.

Q: Is retirement money part of a person's esate

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Indiana on
Answered on Jul 11, 2018
Alexander Florian Steciuch's answer
'Retirement money' in this context could mean any number of accounts or investments. It is difficult to answer your question with limited information.

In general, anything with a beneficiary designation passes outside of a person's estate. This can include IRAs, pensions, life insurance, brokerage accounts, and annuities. However this is not an exhaustive list. If you want to get a more definite answer sit down with an estate planning attorney.

Q: My husband died, he was listed on the mortgage, he left the property to me in a will, how do I transfer the property?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Indiana on
Answered on Jun 5, 2018
Ben F Meek III's answer
It depends on how the property is titled. If you and your husband are reflected on the Deed as "Joint Tenants With Right of Survivorship" you are now the sole owner and an affidavit of termination of Joint tenancy (or your state's equivalent) is probably all that is needed. If your husband was the sole owner (or if the two of you were Co-tenants or Tenants-in-Common), you'll probably have to begin probate proceedings to pass the property's title to you. (You''ll have to figure out how to...

Q: How do I protect myself while buying a house before I file for divorce? All bank accounts are separated.

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce, Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Indiana on
Answered on Apr 23, 2018
Betsy Walits' answer
You don’t. Having bank accounts separated is also irrelevant unless by agreement. Therefore, you can protect yourself by agreement only, no other method is foolproof. I would hire an attorney who would negotiate this with your spouse or wait until you have time to negotiate after filing.

Q: My mother passed away a few days ago without a will. As power of attorney, do I have full authority over the estate?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Indiana on
Answered on Apr 23, 2018
Alexander Florian Steciuch's answer
No, you do not. In fact, your power of attorney terminates at the time of her death. The court will have to appoint a personal representative for the estate.

Q: My brother passed away. He was renting a house in Arizona. I dont believe he has anything of value. I live in Indiana.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Indiana on
Answered on Apr 17, 2018
Alexander Florian Steciuch's answer
No one can determine if you need an attorney to go through his estate if it is unknown what might be in it. If you do need a lawyer you are looking for a probate attorney and that probate attorney would be one based in Arizona, presumably because that is where your brother was domiciled.

Q: Stepfather passed away 3 months ago. My mom passed 4 years ago. My stepfather's daughter has his original will but has

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Indiana on
Answered on Apr 12, 2018
William J Webster's answer
In general you need the original Will to open and estate, however in certain circumstances you can open an estate w/ a copy of the Will. In this case, if someone has the original Will and fails to produce it or it's in the "lock box" at the bank, etc... You can open an estate with a copy and then compel the party to produce the original Will.

If the daughter is the Personal Rep and will eventually be the attorney's future client for the estate, he or she may be reluctant to take any...

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