My brother is the administration over my mother's estate. He collected $75,000 in rents and never paid one mortgage on the house. Now the house foreclosed under his executor administration and he doesn't want to file the final petition. I have affidavits from the tenants signed under penalty of perjury for the court of how long and what they paid. My question is my brother has damaged my future interest in the estate so is there a penalty or damage I can ask for outside of the total he collected for the estate which now comes up to $92,000 total with other items? Is this possible to ask or get in probate court based on these circumstances?
While I think you can get SOME relief I don't anticipate it being a lot. It all depends on what notices you have received through the probate process and how many other heirs there are who have been damaged. I suggest you speak directly with an estate attorney and have them review the probate file to give you specific advise on your situation.
Wills and Living Wills Lawyer
You need to consult a probate attorney. Beneficiaries have rights and are entitled to accountings and information about the administration of an estate. The Administrator has an obligation to preserve and protect estate assets. What rights you have and what damages you suffered would be dependent on all of the facts. That is why you need an attorney to review and advise you and represent you if there is any legal action to be taken.
The above answer is not to be considered legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. You should consult your attorney for specific legal advice as to your individual situation.
Family Law Attorney
What needs to be done depends on what stage this estate administration is in. If the estate is being administered through a Trust, then the procedure is different then if the estate is being probated because of a Will or by Intestate Succession. In any event, you can demand an accounting and ask the court to replace him as administrator. You can also seek reimbursement if he has been negligent on his responsibilities. Please seek legal assistance on this.
Family Law Attorney
Typically, as a beneficiary you have standing to request an accounting and to request a change of executor of the estate. Your facts are complicated and given that there are damages of $92,000 (and possibly more that you do not know about), you should hire an attorney to review the facts and to determine at what point in the proceedings the probate is at. Consult with an attorney now, not later. The longer you wait, the harder it is for the court to correct any bad acts.
The content of the above answer, and any subsequent modification thereto, constitutes general information only and does not constitute legal, accounting, tax, or other professional advice of any kind. The content of this answer should not be relied upon or used as a substitute for consultation with qualified, licensed professional advisors.
As my colleagues have advised, you should consult counsel. You certainly have the right to petition the court to require the administrator to account. It is unclear if the administrator acted in breach of duty. If the house was underwater, for example, and the collected funds are still in the estate perhaps he acted in the estate's best interests. If, on the other hand, he has simply absconded with the money, there are remedies available to you. Those remedies will depend on the exact facts and the present status of any probate proceedings.
Michael R. Daymude, Attorney at Law
Sherman Oaks Galleria – Comerica Bank Building
15303 Ventura Boulevard, Suite 900
Sherman Oaks, CA 91403-3199
Litigation • Lawsuits & Disputes • Real Estate • Probate • Wills & Trusts • Bankruptcy • Personal Injury • Individual & Small Business Legal Matters
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