North Dakota Probate Questions & Answers

Q: My dad just recently died. I'm fourteen and my step mother is keeping all my dad's stuff. What do I do?

1 Answer | Asked in Probate and Estate Planning for North Dakota on
Answered on May 8, 2018
James W. Martens' answer
Presuming your dad died without a will and both of his parents are also deceased, your stepmother would be entitled to the first $150,000, plus half of any balance (i.e., anything remaining above the initial $150,000) of his estate. Not knowing more about the valuations of his property at the time of his death, whether property he owned was owned jointly with your stepmother, and other factors, it is difficult to say what rights you or any of his other children may have.

Often where...

Q: If a family member dies what happens to their debt

1 Answer | Asked in Collections and Probate for North Dakota on
Answered on May 5, 2018
Lucas Wynne's answer
They may make a claim against the estate.

Q: Hi I inherited some land in Williams North Dakota for my father who passed away 2010 my stepmother and my four other Orc

2 Answers | Asked in Probate for North Dakota on
Answered on Jan 9, 2018
Lucas Wynne's answer
Unfortunately, this is a difficult question to answer because I am unsure if the land has any mineral rights, if oil is being produced from the land, the status of the inheritance, etc. I would speak with a local attorney.

Q: My father died 25 years ago without a will. I need to probate his estate now. Are newspaper notices still needed?

2 Answers | Asked in Probate for North Dakota on
Answered on Dec 20, 2017
Lucas Wynne's answer
No attorney can provide advice on this topic without speaking with you directly because more information would be needed.

Q: Does having a will instead of going through probate make a difference in your estate taxes?

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for North Dakota on
Answered on Feb 10, 2017
Kenneth V Zichi's answer
short answer: no

(And don't believe the 'one trick ponies who try to scare people about probate!)

Longer answer, a will does not avoid 'going through probate'. But sometimes you WANT to

have your estate go through probate!

If "avoiding probate" is your primary goal rather than taking care of your needs and

distributing things to your family the way YOU want then you are letting the tail wag the


You should see a QUALIFIED licensed...

Q: Dad died 15 months ago in ND and step mom died this month. no children together. Next of kin is? Her mom is alive but 90

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Civil Litigation, Collections and Probate for North Dakota on
Answered on Feb 6, 2017
Jim Ed "Jed" Franklin's answer
Your question is missing some important information, feel free to contact me via email so I can better answer it. But generally, you should have some interest in your father's estate, though it sounds like there is not much in it. If so, then the "spousal share" may eat up all of the estate. The spousal share is what your stepmother gets from your dad's estate. Nevertheless, it is possible that you are entitled to what is in your father's estate. If your stepmother is the personal...

Q: My mom and dad owned farm land and my dad passed away August 4, 2015. During my dad's probate we had the land appraised.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for North Dakota on
Answered on Feb 6, 2017
Jim Ed "Jed" Franklin's answer
The obligation of the personal representative of the estate is to determine the fair market value. There is no state requirement for an appraisal. I think that you can feel free to use the appraised value on September 9 to determine fair market value on September 15.

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