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Tennessee Probate Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation, Estate Planning and Probate for Tennessee on
Q: Can a small estate be sued.

My daughter died suddenly with few assets and no will. She also had no debts except those acquired surrounding her death. The ambulance sent one bill the first month after death but none since, the Hospital sent a couple and stopped, and the ER Physician group sent many and referred her to... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Sep 9, 2020

You opened up the can by filing Probate. Hire a competent attorney to close this Estate. If no claims are filed within 1 year of death, then it will be great. But you have a fiduciary duty to contact all known creditors, and you can be sued yourself. Administrative expenses should be paid... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Landlord - Tenant and Probate for Tennessee on
Q: we live in my wife's father's house for more than 20 years. when he dies can the family throw us out?

he has no will

Shanone Emmack
Shanone Emmack answered on Sep 7, 2020

If there is no will, and the father is not married , and the house is not jointly owned, then the house should vest in the children when he dies. If your wife becomes joint owner she cannot just be thrown out of the house. I suggest talking to an attorney to understand the whole process.

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Tennessee on
Q: Do I need to go to probate to get my car's title changed from my name "and" deceased husband's name to just my name?

He passed over 5 years ago and the title says "and" not "or" between the owner names.

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Sep 2, 2020

If you are selling it, you might try to sign the title over as yourself and the sole next of kin of the decedent. Or you can apply for a new title to DOS. Most County Clerks will take it as is. If necessary, file a Small Estate Affidavit Probate, but that is alot of expense and trouble for a... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law and Probate for Tennessee on
Q: My grandmother's will states that her house will go to my daughters who are 11 and 14.

The person over the house and funds when the house is sold is my cousin. The will places him as the advisor over the estate until my daughters are 21. The money must be used to take care of my daughter's needs. If there is any money left over when they have each reached 21, then the money goes... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Aug 28, 2020

Is the Testator deceased? If not, then there is no probated Will. If deceased, then the Will must be Probated to have any effect. If no Probate, then the house goes to the heirs. If the cousin is the executor and trustee, then it sounds like a decent devise. To remove an executor, you need... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Tennessee on
Q: Can fees be taken from an estate if the lawyer only represent the Administratrix and not beneficiaries?

My Dads passed and his new wife hired a lawyer to handle the estate in Tennessee, we believed he was acting for the estate and therefore working for all of us but in an email he said he only represented her as the Administratrix, can she still take his fees out of the estate or do they have to be... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Aug 24, 2020

That is how virtually all lawyers handle Estates. And yes, he will be entitled to professional fees from the gross Estate. You and your relatives do not understand Probate. However you can object in writing to the Court if you feel the fees claimed are excessive.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Tennessee on
Q: How does probate court work? I have a settlement in my divorce that was supposed to be paid after death

It’s in court now when will it be paid out?

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Aug 19, 2020

Probate of a Decedent's Estate in TN is usually a long involved process. You will need a competent TN attorney to properly perfect your Claim against the Estate. Hopefully you will recover something. or you may not. It would help to examine the Inventory of Assets at Probate Court.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Tennessee on
Q: How do I deal with my attorney not responding to phone calls and apparently abandoning the probate case in TN?

I live in NY

I have tried to get info from the court but they will not talk to me

I am the executrix for my dad’s will who died in 2016

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Aug 14, 2020

Sometimes you have to discharge one and hire another. Probate in Tennessee is both difficult and expensive, and should not be filed unless necessary. You will need a competent attorney to close the Estate.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Tennessee on
Q: Dad passed but stepmom says nothing to be distributed until her death I fear she will leave to her son.

I’ve never seen a will. My dad had two large inheritances from our family in the past, and made a lot investing. I’m out of state what can I do?

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Aug 11, 2020

You probably can only check on real estate titles at whatever Register of Deeds he would have used. Many investments and insurance policies will go to designated beneficiaries. Many bank accounts will be owned by the joint owner or POD beneficiary. If he died intestate then his Heirs-At-Law... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Foreclosure and Probate for Tennessee on
Q: Family member passed away with written Will left house with mortgage to my mother

The problem I’m facing the house became delinquent I had the money to make the payment but the bank would not accept the payment saying they have to have paperwork saying that I am the executor of the Estate i’m worried that I can’t get this taken care of in a timely manner before my house... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Aug 11, 2020

Your facts do not make sense. But if you started a Probate, which may have not been necessary, then you should be getting your Letters Testamentary from Probate Court. Call the Court today. This will be your authority to act on behalf of the Estate. Insurance and Taxes have to be paid also.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Tennessee on
Q: Can you get arrested for if you don’t show up for court if your Subpoend over an easate hearing ?
Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Aug 11, 2020

Yes the Probate Judge can issue a Capias for your arrest. If you are out of Tennessee, it will be difficult to apprehend you however. But in an Estate some type of Default Judgment may go down without your input. If you have Surety Bond, they will also pursue your assets where you are at.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Tennessee on
Q: My father who recently passed away I was his caregiver he gave me a few things before passin he had no will no POA

A sibling is threaten to get probate

Shanone Emmack
Shanone Emmack answered on Aug 9, 2020

If your father died without a will (intestate) then your father's estate will be divided among his wife and children.

You can petition the court to be the personal representative and handle your father's estate. If your sibling becomes the personal representative then he/she will...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Tennessee on
Q: My husband is the sole beneficiary of his sisters estate. The only thing that didn't have him as co-owner was stock

The stock is in another state and is a private family owned company. Does her will need to go to probate or can this be handled without going through probate? The company knew her wishes and has given him all information on the stock, they just say they need a paper from the court.

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Aug 4, 2020

Probate should be avoided when possible. But this situation might require the same. It might qualify for a Small Estate Affidavit, but a recorded Affidavit of Heirship/Next Of Kin might provide all the source of title he needs. You have not stated many needed facts, so I recommend you consult... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Tennessee on
Q: It has been one year since my family member died with no monies in her bank accounts and her estate was probated.

She owned two pieces of property, which were in her name alone, one of which has a house with a mortgage loan that she still shared with her ex-husband. He is also the executor of the will and sole beneficiary. I paid for her funeral expenses and have filed a claim with the probate court for the... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Jul 27, 2020

Apparently the spouse made a huge mistake filing Probate if only two parcels are the only assets. But since you filed, you should read the file and see if any assets are listed in the Inventory. If no Inventory, file a Motion to Remove the Administrator and possibly apply to administer yourself.... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Tennessee on
Q: My dad lived in Tennessee and recently passed away. We couldn't locate a will.

He was found deceased in his home after being dead over a week, along with water damage turning into mold and fear of his passing being from Covid. His brother and I could not locate a will in his apartment. We did visit his bank to notify them of his passing. The only information we got in return... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Jul 21, 2020

What is the probable size of the Estate? What kind of properties? Did he have alot of creditors? These are questions for a competent attorney, not for what you think is the correct thing to do. You might need to file Probate, and you might not. Do not initiate Probate unless you think you... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Tennessee on
Q: Would a spouse using his deceased wife’s credit cards after her death be considered breach of trust?

Spouse used my mother’s credit card after her death for funeral and vacation. His name was not on the cards and he wasn’t an authorized user.

Paul E. Tennison
Paul E. Tennison answered on Jul 21, 2020

Most likely such action is fraudulent. I am fairly sure that only authorized users may legally use credit cards. Such action may violate state and or federal law. If you inherited money from your Mother's estate such action by her spouse may have improperly diminished the estate and affected... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Tennessee on
Q: My brother died. No will, no wife, no children State TN. My sister and I are the only heirs. Worth 50K how to sell?

Do we have to put it our name first? Want to sell as is.

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Jul 20, 2020

I recommend hiring an attorney to draft and record an Affidavit of Heirship. Then sell the property. If the purchaser and his title company demands Probate, then sell to someone else. Do not execute a TN Residential Disclosure Statement as you have no knowledge of the actual condition of the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Tennessee on
Q: in Tennessee, must the property value be limited to a maximum of $25,000 In order to do a Affidavit of heirship.
Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on Jul 16, 2020

It sounds like you are inquiring about real property owned by the estate of a decedent that died without a will. (If the decedent had a will, an affidavit of heirship is not appropriate.)

If the decedent did not have a will, an affidavit of heirship is one way to administer the real...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Tennessee on
Q: Father passed away in 2013 leaving my mother sole heir in our families of the property and she passed away march of 2019

My younger brother is in jail and has been for awhile that’s why I haven’t put anything in probate yet. My parents didn’t have the chance to put the property in their names before they passed away so it is still in my grandparents name and they have passed away along time ago. My brother and... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Jun 22, 2020

Hire a very competent attorney to Search the Title, then draft and record a complex Affidavit of Heirship as the Heirs' At Law source of Title. Someone has to pay taxes. Possibly the others might Quit Claim Deed to one Heir. Insurance has nothing to do with the land.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Tennessee on
Q: My dad passed 5 years ago and there was no will. His wife of about 5 years was beneficiary on life insurance and pension

The house is in probate and I was named executor by the court. His wife will not sign for the sale of the house I know she is entitled to a percentage under Tenn law we have been to court several times and she agreed to list in real estate but won’t ever sign the sellers agreement so we can’t... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Jun 18, 2020

You say no Will but you are the Executor? Something is wrong, and I bet you are the Court appointed Administrator. You should never have filed Probate in the first place. The house probably is not in the Probate Estate but passed to the Heirs 5 years ago, unless this is an insolvent Estate. A... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Tennessee on
Q: is there a timeline on closing out a probate

husbands mother died 2016, will was sent to probate, my husband died 2019 and his moms probate is still not closed. her probate attorney refused to talk to me even though my husbands will left me everything. I filed his probate in 2019 and had to claim real estate that he didn't own. i still... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Jun 10, 2020

There is no time limit, but it is almost impossible to properly close an Estate in Tennessee in less than fifteen months (some claim to). Who are the Deceased Mother's Legatees/Devisees ? They all should at least look at the File at Probate Court. That may explain the delay, although four... Read more »

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