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Tennessee Probate Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Tennessee on
Q: Can a will be changed after the grantor has deceased if the overseer's is granted power of attorney ?
Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on May 3, 2021

A will cannot be changed after the testator passes. And, in any event, powers of attorney automatically expire/terminate at death.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Tennessee on
Q: My father has a living will and it states then his girlfriend is the executor over the will.

My father's will states that his girlfriend and her grandson can continue living in the home after his death. It also states that the house is left 50% to me and 50% to his girlfriends grandson. I live in the state of Tennessee it is start anything I can do after his death and contest it and... Read more »

Frank J. Steiner
Frank J. Steiner answered on Apr 26, 2021

File a muniment of title with the will. Change title and eject the girlfriend. The will control over anything told to the girlfriend.

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Elder Law and Probate for Tennessee on
Q: If my father's life insurance is paid to my mother's estate can it be taken by creditors my parents owed money to?

My father had a life insurance policy with prudential that named my mother as primary beneficiary and me and my brother as contingent beneficiaries. My parents passed from covid within 22 hours of each other. My father passed 1st and my mother 2nd surviving him by 22 hours on a ventilator. After... Read more »

Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Apr 25, 2021

You are correct on both accounts. If your mom did not survive your dad by at least 120 hours, then she is deemed to have predeceased him. That would leave his children as the sole heirs of his estate (having died without a will). The insurance proceeds should be paid to you and your other... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Tennessee on
Q: In TN does the probate attorney have to keep the heirs of the estate informed of the status of the probate case?

My mother died without a will in October 2018. My step-father is the personal representative and has hired an attorney who began the probate case. I have not received copies of any documents filed in court nor do I know the status of the case. The probate attorney does not return my calls nor... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Apr 23, 2021

The Probate attorney does not represent the interested parties in the Estate. Many Probate documents filed with t he Court do not have to be served on anyone. I suggest you go to the Probate Court and read the File. If it is incomplete, wrong, etc., hire an attorney to represent you.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law and Probate for Tennessee on
Q: I want to sell my deceased mother house but I have siblings

They can't buy me out and refuse to sell

Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Apr 18, 2021

First, if the title to the house has not already been updated to your names, you need to take care of that. A probate attorney can help you with that.

Then you can hire a real estate litigation attorney to file a lawsuit to force a sale and divide the proceeds among you. This is not...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Tennessee on
Q: My father just died and I’m being asked by my mother to sign a waiver saying that she is to carry out his will.

Should I do it?

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Apr 14, 2021

That is probably a consent for Mother to be the Administrator of his Intestate Estate. Apparently there is not a Will, so you are confused. You may wish to hire a competent attorney about what to do now. The type and amount of the assets should be considered. Both of you are Heirs and Next of... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Tennessee on
Q: Hi, My father recently passed without a will. I am his only living child. He has 2 other children that already passed.

His grandchildren are stating that I am not biologically his and demand a DNA test. He was married to my mother and is on my birth certificate.I also grew up going to his house every other weekend. I was not close to him as an adult My siblings children claim they never heard of me. I never had any... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Apr 6, 2021

If you are his child, then you are an heir and next of kin. Has an Estate been Probated? Probate would probably be in your best interests here. You will need to hire an attorney to look into it and represent you. Otherwise forget about it, as time is of the essence.

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Probate for Tennessee on
Q: How do I record a holographic will in Tennessee
Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Mar 29, 2021

You do not record a Will except a certified copy of a Probated Will as a muniment of title. Wills are filed for Probate. But first you need a competent attorney to analyze whether you should administer an Estate or not.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Tennessee on
Q: 30 years I've lived at this address with my wife and she did not leave me anything when she died. Do I have any options?

There was no abuse of any kind she amended her will several times and added and removed me each time.

Thank you!

Frank J. Steiner
Frank J. Steiner answered on Mar 26, 2021

Yes. You can claim an elective share against the estate and depending on the number of years you were married you can claim a percentage of the net estate.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Tennessee on
Q: Received a check in deceased mothers name from Honda. “A refund due to over payment on her account.”

My mother passed in 2019, with no will and very little assets. An estate bank account was never opened. I did have to file for a small estate affidavit and have a couple of checks she received and her car and truck listed on it in order to receive the vehicles and cash the checks. The small estate... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Mar 10, 2021

That Small Estate Affidavit should be enough for the Bank to honor the check. You may wish to try another Bank. Sometimes Letters of Administration are issued from the Small Estate Probate, which should be your authority to cash the check. If nothing else, contact me.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Tennessee on
Q: As a beneficiary named in a decedent's will, am I able to file a muniment of title to obtain ownership to decedent's hom
Frank J. Steiner
Frank J. Steiner answered on Mar 2, 2021

Yes, If you are named to inherit the real property

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Tennessee on
Q: I have a question about my fathers estate. He passed away last November and I am his oldest child.
Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Feb 25, 2021

What is your question? Pertinent facts involve: surviving spouse, children or deceased children; what kinds of properties and debts are involved; and did the Decedent have a Will? Without a Probated Will, the Heirs At Law own his real property, and the Next Of Kin own his personal property.... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Tennessee on
Q: My brother and I are co-executors in my mothers will. He owes back taxes. Can the IRS come after those assets.

With his consent, if removed as co-executor, can we stop the IRS from taking assets?

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Feb 24, 2021

Hopefully you have not filed Probate yet. In any event you need a competent attorney to handle this. You are correct that the Brother should not be an Executor, and the Court will not have a problem with that. The Estate should not be victimized by your Brother's tax situation, but it could... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Elder Law, Estate Planning and Probate for Tennessee on
Q: Sister's attorney knowingly deeded an diagnosed mentally incapacitated aunt's entire estate to his client, is he liable?

Attorney conspired with his client, knowingly accepted $4,000 in checks written by his client directly from their elderly vulnerable victim's embezzled bank account. A financial exploiting, poverty stricken niece hired an attorney to become aunt's POA and assist her in taking deed to... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Feb 16, 2021

There may be presumptive fraud if the Attorney In Fact deeded the principal's property to himself, or possibly his client. There are SOL's which you may have breached, and you may not have standing. Hire a competent attorney to examine the facts and title. You may or may not have a case.

1 Answer | Asked in Intellectual Property, Real Estate Law, Estate Planning and Probate for Tennessee on
Q: (TN)My grandmother and stepfather were in the deed to property. Grams had my uncle and mom only

Uncle passed years ago(10) then grams passes. 3 months ago my stepfather passes(no kids, just me since I was 3) and a few weeks ago my mother passed. My uncle was married with no children. Does my aunt(living in michigan) have any rights to my mom's house?( Only asset in the family) I was... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Feb 11, 2021

Hire a competent attorney in the County where the property is. You need a title search, a determination of heirship (maybe two bloodlines or more), and an Affidavit of Heirship, which will be the Heirs' recorded source of title. Better check the property taxes too, or the Trustee might sell... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law and Probate for Tennessee on
Q: My husband and I remodeled and repaired my sister's house and moved in with her as her wishes to take care of her.

She passed away with no will, but 1 living parent and that parent wants the house. Is she required to legally evict us through the court. State of TN

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Feb 10, 2021

The Parent will have to file a Detainer Warrant against both of you. The Warrant must be served or posted, heard until a Judgment is rendered, and if you are not out of possession within ten days, get a Writ of Possession executed by the Sheriff.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Tennessee on
Q: My mother passed Jan 2021 in TN but I'm in KY and indigent, how do I open estate and be administrator, I can't pay filin

I am going to be in Tennessee soon and go to the courthouse, I'm her only child and need to be administrator because there is no will but the home and assets are just sitting there and I've been told people are going through her things and taking it out of the home! I truly do not have... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Feb 8, 2021

Any free legal help would be worthless and probably would not be available. You might search the title in the County of the home and determine who her Heirs were. The Heirs At Law probably own the home, but there may have been a Deed of Trust, or Mother may not have owned it. Property Taxes... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Tennessee on
Q: Do I have to probate? Only asset not in heirs name is auto. Medicaid nursing home resident las 1 1/2 yrs
Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Jan 27, 2021

If someone has died with nothing in his or her name but an auto, you can probably collect it with a small estate affidavit. The local clerk's office, where motor vehicle title transfers are registered, has a simple one-page form for this.

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law and Probate for Tennessee on
Q: Mother is terminal with 300K in medical debt. will the debt collectors stop me from adding ownership and maybe selling

She inherited her debt from her husband who passed 3 months ago. He was my stepfather but never legally adopted me. Her only asset is this house and land. Is there a way for me to put it in my name and stop the debt collectors from allowing me to renovate and increase value and possibly sell or... Read more »

Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Jan 26, 2021

Your situation is actually a little more complicated than you realize and a full consultation would be required to help you sort this out. Be prepared to provide a copy of the death certificate for step-father, step-father's will (or confirm there was none), mother's will (or confirm... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Tennessee on
Q: I have had a lien against me for years my mother just passed, are they allow to take her life insurance i am beneficary

the lien was from over a decade ago and I don't even remember what it was for. I am primary beneficary on her life insurance policies. should I do something in advance

Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Jan 26, 2021

After you deposit the insurance proceeds in your bank account, your creditors can get to it. Your mother could have prevented that by naming a trust as the beneficiary of her life insurance policy instead of you individually, but now that she has passed it is too late to fix that.

If you...
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