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Annie Noelle Arbenz
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Annie Arbenz’s Answers

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  • My husband passed 11 yrs ago and I'm having difficulties transferring title into my name. What does it take?

    We purchased a property 20 yrs ago and I still reside there. My husband had a will that clearly named me as the sole beneficiary of this property. I refinanced 5 years ago and assumed title transfer from both of our names to mine happened then. ...

    Annie’s Answer

    The quickest way to deal with it would be to record with the county auditor a community property agreement, if you have one. It's possible that you will have to open a probate to clear title so that it is just in your name.

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  • I need to know how to become an Estate Representive for my diceased mother who had no will.

    My mother lived with me and my family when she passed. She had zero bank accounts she had no will etc. She did however start the process for a common experience payment through the boarding schools of Canada. Now my step father still resides with ...

    Annie’s Answer

    I'm sorry to hear about your mother's passing. There seem to be a lot of issues floating around (international law, trusts, estates, etc.) but you are asking all the right questions. To effectively collect debts on behalf of a deceased person, you need to start a probate. It sounds like it would be relatively straightforward, so if you want to discuss what it would cost, please feel free to give me a call and we can discuss.

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  • Inherited land with no will. How to transfer deed?

    My mother died with no will and I am the only daughter. How do I transfer the land deed into my name?

    Annie’s Answer

    Unfortunately, even though you are the only daughter, you are required to open a probate with the superior court to be able to properly transfer the property into your name. I would be happy to talk about the particulars with you and what a straightforward probate would cost to administer.

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  • My Dad died 12 years ago in Washington State

    My sister is the execetor of his estate to be monitored thru the courts. She sold his home and has his pickup and motorhome. never had a estate sale and no longer has a attorney. She has Bought a new Hummer,Harley davidson Motor cycle and is buyin...

    Annie’s Answer

    As suggested below, you should definitely get involved and, due to the nature of the case, you should discuss the case with an attorney so he/she can assess what claims you have, if any, against your sister, and what you're entitled to from your dad's estate.

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  • How do you transfer a home after the death of your parent

    My Mom passed away last year. I am the executor of the will and the only heir. I have been administering the probate process which is coming to a close. I need to transfer the home into my name. I was the caregiver for my Mom for the last 11 years...

    Annie’s Answer

    I'm sorry to hear about your mom and I am impressed that you have handled the administration of her estate thursfar - a difficult job. You will need a deed to transfer the home out of your mom's name. Depending on the circumstances, an attorney might use a simple quitclaim deed, but usually it will be a more complex fiduciary deed will be used, which seeks to protect you as the administrator. Because your audience is comprised of lawyers, you can probably guess that we would recommend you discuss with an attorney the form of deed and potential issues before recording the deed and closing the probate/wrapping up administration of the estate. However, as the first answer says, a non-attorney can draft the deed. It is just not recommended because there are some pitfalls of which you should be aware. Hope this helps; good luck!

    Disclaimer: Please note that this answer does not constitute legal advice, and should not be relied on since each situation is fact specific, and it is impossible to evaluate a legal problem without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship. A lawyer experienced in the subject area and licensed to practice in the jurisdiction should be consulted for legal advice.

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  • Probate/creditors claims

    To pay off a creditors claim,is it sufficient to send just a check attached to a copy of the creditors claim that was sent? (write on the check- creditors claim paid in full) The attorney that sent the claim did not include any forms for me to s...

    Annie’s Answer

    Sometimes it is advisable to obtain a release from the creditor after you have paid the claim. Then, you would file that release with the court, establishing that the claim has been paid. This isn't always necessary and, if you have legal counsel, he/she should let you know if it is something you should do. If obtaining/filing a release isn't necessary, simply sending a check to the creditor is sufficient to pay the claim. I would keep track of when/how it was paid and maybe even keep a copy of the check.

    Disclaimer: Please note that this answer does not constitute legal advice, and should not be relied on since each situation is fact specific, and it is impossible to evaluate a legal problem without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship. A lawyer experienced in the subject area and licensed to practice in the jurisdiction should be consulted for legal advice.

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  • How can I find my deceased stepmother's will (or a community property agreement by her and my father, who is still living)?

    My stepmother died several years ago and left everything to my father who is still living. He says they did a joint will and he cannot remember the name of the attorney. I think there may have been a community property agreement too.

    Annie’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    You should check the records of the auditor in the county where your stepmother resided when she died. Often, when the surviving spouse is the sole beneficiary, a Community Property Agreement is recorded with the county auditor in lieu of a full-blown probate.

    Also, attorneys have various resources available to them to track down estate planning documents.

    Good luck!

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  • Probate-After the 4 months have passed...

    (probate notice was published in the newspaper and sent to each creditor) What's the best thing to do when you keep receiving creditors bills after the 4 month period for them to file a claim has passed. These are not creditor claims. Should I c...

    Annie’s Answer

    This is tricky. You need to be sure that each creditor received proper notice and that enough time as has passed since that notice was sent. Technically, if the creditor fails to file a claim within the four months OR within 30 days after the notice was sent, the claim is barred.

    It depends on the nature of the claim and whether sufficient notice was given.

    I wouldn't ignore these claims unless you are positive each is barred under RCW 11.40.051. Even then, I would recommend contacting the creditor (preferably in writing) to explain why the bill is not going to be paid.

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  • Is NOTICE required to heirs/beneficiaries and the alternative named personal representatives in a will, if Im named 1st PR ?

    I was named as 1st personal represenative in a will, and there were 2 other alternates named 2nd & 3rd respectively. I was named to serve as PR without bond and with non-intervention powers. Do I have to give NOTICE to the Heirs, beneficiaries and...

    Annie’s Answer

    If you are named as the PR in the will, you can petition the court to admit the will to probate and obtain letters testamentary (letters of administration is when there is no will) without first providing notice to the beneficiaries/heirs. If you are appointed as PR, you must give notice to the beneficiaries and heirs within a certain time frame after your appointment, then file proof that you sent the notice with the court.

    If you are not represented by an attorney, you should consider it as administering a probate can be tricky and, as PR, you have many legal obligations and duties. Good luck!

    Disclaimer: Please note that this answer does not constitute legal advice, and should not be relied on since each situation is fact specific, and it is impossible to evaluate a legal problem without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship. A lawyer experienced in the subject area and licensed to practice in the jurisdiction should be consulted for legal advice.

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  • Probate/should I hire a Lawyer?

    Can you hire a Lawyer to handle just the creditors claims portion of an ongoing probate? Would a Lawyer have anymore success in negotiating the claims? Example- The creditor(hospital) has stated that they have already written off enough from the...

    Annie’s Answer

    Hiring a lawyer to handle only the creditor claims aspect of a probate is rare and difficult because the process is, as I am sure you have noticed, very involved and has many moving parts.

    The process to deal with each creditor's claim is governed by statute and must be followed carefully. I can't tell from your question whether the estate has a strong negotiating position or not. Among other things, this determination depends on whether notice of the probate was published, whether/when the creditor received actual notice, whether/when a claim was filed and, if filed, whether the claim has been accepted or rejected by the executor.

    Most probate attorneys charge by the hour, not on a contingent or flat-fee basis. If you would like to further discuss your questions and rates, feel free to give me a call.

    Disclaimer: Please note that this answer does not constitute legal advice, and should not be relied on since each situation is fact specific, and it is impossible to evaluate a legal problem without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship. A lawyer experienced in the subject area and licensed to practice in the jurisdiction should be consulted for legal advice.

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