Probate Questions & Answers

Q: I'm set to receive money from a family member's estate

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for New York on
Answered on Sep 29, 2016

It is up to them. A POD designation will avoid probate and allow you to access the money faster.
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Q: How to transfer ownership of a life insurance policy with no probated will, death > 4 years ago, estate >50K in Texas?

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Answered on Sep 28, 2016

When you say you are the named insured, do you mean you were listed as the beneficiary or your father had the policy in case of your death?
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Q: executor is planning estate distribution before will is probated. can they do this?

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Answered on Sep 28, 2016

A named person in as will as executor is not authorized to officially act as one until such time the will is probated with the courts and the Court grants permission. If you believe they are acting inappropriately you may want to consider theft charges or other civil action; again, as they have no authority to touch anything. I wish you the best.
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Q: My step father and mother had a will that said each other gets their house if the other passes first.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Probate for Texas on
Answered on Sep 28, 2016

I answered this question for you in the probate section.
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Q: I need to find out if my mothers will is still good.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Answered on Sep 28, 2016

I'm sorry for your losses. One part of determining a will valid is whether or not they passed within the last 4 years as you must probate a will within 4 years. A will does not have to be registered with a courthouse to make it a valid will; however, in order for items/property, etc. to pass as wished it will need to be probated in court (makes everything official).

Best wishes.
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Q: My dad died and left my sister as executor, we got into and argument a few years after and she said she got money

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Pennsylvania on
Answered on Sep 28, 2016

The executor has to file a paper with the court to close an estate. That paper should spell out the distribution. Go to the recorder of deeds. Find out what is on the docket. You can petition to have her replaced if the estate isn't closed.
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Q: Couple is divorced and Will names Ex-Spouse as executor. She is clearly disqualified. What if ex-spouse's sister is name

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for California on
Answered on Sep 28, 2016

There are a few scenarios where the ex-spouse will not be able to serve as the executor.

Was the decedent married at the time of death? If so, the surviving spouse can file a spousal petition without administration.

Does the ex-spouse refuse to act as executor?

Look at the assets of the estate, are they of a character and value that requires a formal probate petition?

Anyone can bring a petition for probate, so the ex-sister-in-law can bring the petition and...
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Q: My aunt formed a trust with beneficiaries being 4 entities and then decendants of the 4 entities. My aunt passed 11/03

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Florida on
Answered on Sep 27, 2016

No, from May until now doesn't seem very long at all for such a case.

What makes you think the attorney has been drawing money (from the trust, I assume) since 2013, if the case wasn't filed until this past May?
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Q: My dear friend passed away without a will.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Florida on
Answered on Sep 27, 2016

No, it doesn't . It doesn't have the formal requirements for a will and thus is ineffective.
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Q: My ex husband forgot to change me as his beneficiary on his insurance policy.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for California on
Answered on Sep 26, 2016

As a general rule, a divorce judgement alone will not terminate a life insurance beneficiary. However, you should look at your property settlement agreement to see how it handles the life insurance policy.

Also, as your ex-husband remarried, the new wife may have rights to the policy (or a portion of it) due to community property laws.

I would take a copy of of your divorce decree and property settlement to a lawyer for consultation.
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Q: My father recently passed away. We believe he made no will. I have two other siblings that live in another state. I am

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for New York on
Answered on Sep 26, 2016

Your attorney is probably right, he's being cautious, that's a good thing. Considering your siblings and you are acting hostile (i.e. "press criminal charges.") It's best that you only speak to them through your attorney and that your attorney potentially advise them to get counsel as well to go through, at least this is what I would recommend so that there is less likelihood of miscommunication or misunderstanding. Perhaps you should all be given administrative powers over the estate and...
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Q: Questions about separate signed document superseding a legal will.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for California on
Answered on Sep 24, 2016

No. The handwritten note would need to be executed in the same way as a normal will and grandpa just signing off on a note that A wrote (this is important) is not enough. If grandpa wrote the note and signed off on it, that might be different. It will also be important if witnesses were present or not. Find this out.

To get the note recognized, person A would have to probate it and prove to the court that it was valid.

To determine validity, it will also be important what your...
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Q: Questions about separate signed document superseding a legal will.

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for California on
Answered on Sep 24, 2016

No. The handwritten note would need to be executed in the same way as a normal will and grandpa just signing off on a note that A wrote (this is important) is not enough. If grandpa wrote the note and signed off on it, that might be different. It will also be important if witnesses were present or not. Find this out.

To get the note recognized, person A would have to probate it and prove to the court that it was valid.

To determine validity, it will also be important what your...
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Q: Am I legally obligated to pay on a loan that my Mother aquired prior to her death.

2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Florida on
Answered on Sep 23, 2016

Whoever you talked to at the probate court was mistaken (or perhaps misunderstood what you were asking); probate is required to transfer title to real property from a decedent's estate (such as your father's) to an heir such as you.

It appears that the loan was not properly documented, and is thus unenforceable by the person who loaned the money.

But at any rate you are not obligated. But as noted you would have to probate the estate to get title. At that time, the person...
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Q: Can my probation be overturned due to my disability

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Probate and Social Security for Georgia on
Answered on Sep 22, 2016

What kind of disability? What condition of probation do you wish to overturn? A court does need to make "reasonable accommodations" to persons with disabilities.
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Q: My father and I did not stay in touch. Just learned of his passing and was told by funeral home he had no children.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for North Carolina on
Answered on Sep 22, 2016

I assume you are asking because of possible inheritance. If so, based on your description you may likely be first in line to inherit everything - if he doesn't have a will. If he does have a will and you aren't in it you could get nothing (assuming there is anything to get). Likely the best place to start is with his lawyer to see who the executor of his estate is and review the will (if there is one).
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Q: We have a Will and a Trust but nothing was put into the Trust. Can assets 'flow through' probate into the trust?

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Florida on
Answered on Sep 21, 2016

If Florida was his place of residence (or domicile), you would file the probate case in Florida, but for real estate in Wisconsin you would also file an "ancillary" probate case there.

Wills can, but don't have to be, filed with the court in Florida. It may be the same in Wisconsin and, if he had a Wisconsin attorney draw up the documents, evidently the decedent was a Wisconsin resident when the documents were written.

I'm slightly confused by your statement that "The originals...
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Q: I have been in a custody trial for 10 months final trial date in a month and my ex wants to hire a lawyer can she? MASS

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Probate for Massachusetts on
Answered on Sep 20, 2016

The Court may determine that a continuance of the trial should be granted depending on a number of facts and the Court's opinion of whether merely a delay is sought.
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Q: My father passed 4 months before his mother. Will my stepmother or his children receive his inheritance

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Massachusetts on
Answered on Sep 20, 2016

Did his mother leave a Will? She may have taken his death into consideration and made plans to benefit her other children, for instance. Normally your stepmother would not be involved unless your grandmother? ( his mother ) provided for her in her Will . You would potentially have an inheritance with his other children "stepping into his shoes" if she did not leave a Will.
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Q: My son was adopted at age 33. He passed away and now I was told I have no legal rights is this true?

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption and Probate for Massachusetts on
Answered on Sep 20, 2016

I guess you are his father? It also depends when he was adopted and when he died. The laws have changed in Massachusetts over the years.
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