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Michigan Probate Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Michigan on
Q: Is a Notice to Creditors needed for a small estate with no assets?

My brother in law passed away intestate in Michigan 2021, leaving 2 adult sons, no assets. There was never a need to open an estate.

My mother in law passed recently intestate in Georgia and has real estate, etc.

Before we can file for an estate for my mother in law, we have to... Read more »

Kenneth V Zichi
Kenneth V Zichi
answered on Jan 28, 2023

The short answer is 'yes' whenever you open an estate you have to do a LOT of things, including publishing.

The longer answer is -- there are a lot of things that are required, starting with determining whether or not a probate estate is REALLY necessary. How do you come to the...
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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Michigan on
Q: Saginaw County MI: My brother committed suicide in Oct. and we need to know what to do next for mother to sell his home.
Kenneth V Zichi
Kenneth V Zichi
answered on Jan 26, 2023

I'm sorry to hear of your loss.

IF your brother owned the house solely, it will need to go through probate, and his heirs (maybe your mother, maybe not ... it depends on whether or not he had a will, or children, or a spouse etc. none of which you say) so that SOMEONE (be that his...
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1 Answer | Asked in Contracts, Estate Planning and Probate for Michigan on
Q: As the beneficiary of

As the beneficiary of a deceased insured, do I have the legal right to give the insurance company authorization to

Disclose the deceased, personal medical information? I am the deceased’s wife. They want me to sign a paper and give them that right. Is that legal for me to do? I did have... Read more »

Thomas. R. Morris
Thomas. R. Morris
answered on Jan 25, 2023

The Michigan statutes on decisions to be made regarding the body of a dead person use the term "next of kin" to refer to the class of persons who can make such decisions. As the widow, you would be the "next of kin". Therefore, you would be a person with authority to make... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Michigan on
Q: My mother passed away last week with no will. She was not married and I have 2 younger sisters. How do I become executor

My mother died last week and lived in an apartment above her married boyfriends garage. He claims she had previously given him authority over everything in the event of her death and that he couldn't find the paper. He has thus far managed to make all the arrangements, have her body moved to... Read more »

Trent Harris
Trent Harris
answered on Jan 16, 2023

First, I'm sorry for your loss. You may or may not need to become executor of your mother's estate. In Michigan, the executor is called the personal representative of the estate. You may wish to seek appointment as personal representative of the estate if your mother had assets which... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Michigan on
Q: Clarification of requirements to properly settle affairs of second to die spouse with A/B trust.

Scenario is settling affairs of second to die spouse with A/B trust in place along with pour-over will, and personal property transfer document. First settlor died 15 years ago, second settlor is still alive.

Irrevocable portion of trust currently contains properly titled real property and... Read more »

Trent Harris
Trent Harris
answered on Dec 21, 2022

It sounds like you are on the right track, based on what information you provided in your question. The decision whether probate is necessary usually hinges on whether there are any assets which require probate administration. Opening a probate estate is sometimes done even if there are not assets,... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law, Elder Law and Probate for Michigan on
Q: Real estate: Living Mother & Deceased Father on title. Both on medicare. Dad died in long term nursing home care.

My mother wants to pass the house on to me when she passes, but she also has the potential to be in long term care in the couple years. Will medicare take our house if she goes into long term care (or do they even currently have a lien due to my deceased father being in a nursing home)? How can we... Read more »

Kenneth V Zichi
Kenneth V Zichi
answered on Dec 5, 2022

There are ways to keep the house from being 'recovered' by Medicare (in Michigan) currently, but you need to insure it is done right or your mother may not be ELIGIBLE for Medicare.

Seek the advice and drafting assistance of a local probate / elder law attorney to be sure you do...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Michigan on
Q: My nephew died Intestate. His wife filed for informal probate & lied many times on the application. What can be done?

They never shared a marital home he lived with my mother the entire time. She chose to live with her ex-husband and their two youngest children. Unfortunately, my nephew died in the hospital not because of the treatment the doctors were giving him, but because of his lifestyle the treatments... Read more »

Trent Harris
Trent Harris
answered on Nov 21, 2022

Certain people have the right to participate in probate court proceedings for a decedent estate. These people are called "interested persons" as defined by Michigan law. For example, a deceased person's spouse is an interested person. If the deceased person had any surviving... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Estate Planning and Probate for Michigan on
Q: I am my mothers legal guardian and executor. Can not find will. Can I get a copy even though she is alive from the court
Brent T. Geers
Brent T. Geers
answered on Oct 23, 2022

Unlikely. While there is a process to place a will with the probate court for a fee, few people do so. The court would otherwise not have a copy of the will. Your options are to 1) keep searching through personal files and hope you find it, or 2) figure out which attorney may have drafted the will... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Michigan on
Q: My father-in-law recently passed away there was no will If one child’s name was put on as beneficiary to the bank accoun

Does that legally mean it’s just her money or would that money have to go into an estate and be split

Trent Harris
Trent Harris
answered on Oct 6, 2022

Bank accounts that have a payable on death beneficiary designation on them pass outside of probate. That means if your father-in-law named someone as a beneficiary to his bank account, the money belongs to that person, and that person alone, upon your father-in-law's death. That person (she?)... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Michigan on
Q: No will.

No will. My mother is deceased. She has been remarried for 9 years, her spouse is a Texas resident. She had a home in Michigan for 22 years

The home is in her name. Her domicile is in Texas. There will not be probate in Texas, no property. She also has 4 adult children. Who will receive... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
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Anthony M. Avery
answered on Sep 30, 2022

With land in MI, her Heirs take, which will be her issue surviving and her surviving Spouse, all as Tenants In Common. Hire a MI attorney to search the Title, determine Heirs and record an Affidavit of Heirship, unless there is a Probate. The former will be the Heirs' recorded source of title.

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Michigan on
Q: How can I get proof my brother and sister have poa and are trustees for her trust for my mother.

I have asked to see them but they have refused to show the documents to me

Trent Harris
Trent Harris
answered on Sep 30, 2022

Your brother and sister have no obligation to share your mother's power of attorney or your mother's trust with you in a strict legal sense. If your mother is living, then it is likely the trust is revocable and she is the only present beneficiary of the trust, and no one else is entitled... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Michigan on
Q: No will. My mother is deceased. She has been remarried for 9 years. She had a home in Michigan for 22 years

The home is in her name. Her domicile is in Texas. There will not be probate in Texas, no property. She also has 4 adult children. Who will receive the home according to probate in Michigan. Trying to sell currently over 100,000. Can her spouse sign a quit claim deed to a certain person?

Brooke Lauren Archie
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Brooke Lauren Archie
answered on Sep 27, 2022

According to Michigan’s rules of intestate succession (when someone dies without a will), as of 2021, the surviving spouse inherits the first $243,000 plus 3/4th of the value of the remaining assets. In short, assuming the market value of the house is $243,000 or less, the house solely belongs to... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate and Family Law for Michigan on
Q: How do I stop a legal guardianship on an adult?

My brother was in a terrible motorcycle accident and is currently on a ventilator. He has never been married and has no children and lives byhimself. My sister is trying to get legal guardianship without the consent of myself and my other brother. How can I handle this?

Brooke Lauren Archie
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Brooke Lauren Archie
answered on Sep 27, 2022

Hi. It looks like you’re in Virginia so the law may differ from Michigan’s where I practice. However, generally, consent is not required from all interested parties. Yet, as an interested party, you do have the legal right to object to your sister’s appointment as guardian if you believe she... Read more »

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3 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Michigan on
Q: Is a Notice to Creditors required for a person who dies who has ONLY a Trust and no will on file at probate court?

My mother is 97yo. She has no property that she owns and no car. She is in hospice and close to death. Her assets include only 3 POD CDs, a checking account (current values < $50,000 for monthly recurring bills; one credit card with a balance of < $100; a Savings account of just over $1,000;... Read more »

Brooke Lauren Archie
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Brooke Lauren Archie
answered on Sep 22, 2022

Short answer is no. If she has no assets to be probated , and no will to be admitted, there’s no need to open an probate estate in the court. Absent opening an estate in probate court, there’s no legal requirement to publish notice to creditors as they can only file claims against probate assets.

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Michigan on
Q: After Proof of Service for Informal probate has been mailed. Can you hire a different lawyer instead. Nothing filed yet.

After Proof of Service for Informal probate has been mailed. Can you hire a different lawyer instead. Nothing filed yet.

After Proof of Service for Informal probate and appointment of PR, notice intent request informal appt PR were mailed out. 14 days is not here yet, nothing filed yet. Can... Read more »

Kenneth V Zichi
Kenneth V Zichi
answered on Sep 20, 2022

Your 'next steps' probably depend on the retainer agreement you signed.

Yes, you CAN always change lawyers, but bear in mind:

1) You're complaining about a (less than) one week delay in mailing paperwork,

2) Nothing CAN be done during that 14 day waiting...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Michigan on
Q: After Proof of Service for Informal probate has been mailed. Can you hire a different lawyer instead. Nothing filed yet.

After Proof of Service for Informal probate and appointment of PR, notice intent request informal appt PR were mailed out. 14 days is not here yet, nothing filed yet. Can you hire a different attorney instead? If so, does another notice need to be filed again, waiting another 14 days? No... Read more »

Brent T. Geers
Brent T. Geers
answered on Sep 19, 2022

If the reason to look for a different attorney is dissatisfaction with the timeline so far, I think your concern may be a bit unfounded at this point. It is not unusual for notices to go out, and then proof of service of those notices to be sent to the court later. 14 days is 14 days, but you also... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Michigan on
Q: My father passed in 2021 and I'm executor of estate. My sister wants copy of his taxes, do I have to give copy to her?

The estate has been completed and payments given to everyone. His original taxes for 2022 have been filed and are kept with the rest of his records in a safe. Do I legally have to give her a copy?

Trent Harris
Trent Harris
answered on Sep 7, 2022

Most likely yes. You have a duty to act in the best interests of the estate and heirs and devisees. You also have a duty to provide reasonable information about the estate and estate property to the heirs and devisees of the estate, especially information pertaining to the financial condition of... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Michigan on
Q: quMom deceased recently. Mom is married, no will. Her domicile is in Texas, also has a non homestead in MI. Mom and

daughter are on warranty deed in MI. No mention of survivorship on warranty deed. Does Mom's portion need probate still? Mom's spouse willing to sign Quit Claim deed to daughter on the said deed. If probate needed, can you file in TX & MI, can spouse still sign Quit Claim to... Read more »

Trent Harris
Trent Harris
answered on Aug 31, 2022

Based on the information given in your question, it sounds as if the deed to mom and daughter conveyed the property to them as tenants in common. If this is the case, then some type of Michigan probate procedure will need to be used to transfer mom's interest. Your best bet is to contact a... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Probate for Michigan on
Q: How do I transfer property from a deceased parent to one of his sons?

Probate court is currently open, which doc would we need to send to the deeds office?

David Soble
PREMIUM
David Soble
answered on Aug 29, 2022

Real estate and probate matters very frequently intersect. You need to first confirm that you have authority from the court to transfer or convey real estate out of an estate. If you do, then the personal representative has authority to create a deed during the pendency of a probate estate... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Michigan on
Q: Looking for attorneys legal responsibility after writing WILL and person is deceased. Will and death both in same week

Michigan law

Brooke Lauren Archie
PREMIUM
Brooke Lauren Archie
answered on Aug 25, 2022

If I’m understanding your question, you would like to know what responsibility the attorney who drafted the will has after the death of the testator. Generally, the answer is none. The proximity of death to the execution of the will may or may not be relevant, but it is not absolute. The drafting... Read more »

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