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How long do you have to file a will in Pennsylvania?

Pittsburgh, PA |

My aunt died three years ago and my dad, who was to take care of the legal matters, never filed her will. The issue at stake is her home, which she had willed to my sister and I. There are back taxes due on the property, which is another issue, but we are wanting to finally get this issue settled. Are we able to still file the will 3 years later? What other steps would I need to take to obtain ownership of the house?

Attorney Answers 3


  1. Section 3133(a) of the Probate, Estates and Fiduciary Code provides that "A Will may be offered for probate at any time." So you are still able to file the will and start the probate administration process. The "other steps" are really too complicated to set forth here. You should really engage the services of an experience estate administration attorney to assist you.

    NOTE: Mr. Fischer is an attorney licensed to practice in Pennsylvania. He can be reached at 610-269-0900 Ext 2 or jgf@vflawoffice.com. This answer was prepared for educational purposes only. By using this site you understand and agree that there is no attorney client relationship or confidentiality between you and the attorney responding. This site should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney that practices in the subject area in your jurisdiction and with whom you have an attorney client relationship. Frequently the question does not include significant and important facts and time lines that if known could significantly change the response. The law changes frequently and varies from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. The information and materials provided are general in nature, and may not apply to a specific factual or legal circumstance described in the question or omitted from the question.


  2. Mr Fisher offers sound advice. You would be well served especially since so much time has elapses to retain an estates attorney.

    For a sense of what is involved in administering an estatein PA please read the following two articles: Estate & Probate Administration: Do Not Try This On Your Own at http://www.sjfpc.com/page1.html and Pennsylvania Probate & Estate Administration: Executor Duties at http://www.sjfpc.com/pennsylvania_probate_estate__administration_duties_of_executor_and_administrator.html Once there, be sure to hit the like button at the end of these articles if you found them helpful.

    LEGAL DISCLAIMER Mr. Fromm is licensed to practice law throughout the state of PA with offices in Philadelphia and Montgomery Counties. He is authorized to handle IRS matters throughout the United States. His phone number is 215-735-2336 or his email address is sjfpc@comcast.net , his website is www.sjfpc.com. and his blog is <http://frommtaxes.wordpress.com/> Mr. Fromm is ethically required to state that the response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/ client relationship. Also, there are no recognized legal specialties under Pennsylvania law. Any references to a trust, estate or tax lawyer refer only to the fact that Mr. Fromm limits his practice to these areas of the law. These responses are only in the form of legal education and are intended to only provide general information about the matter within the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that if known could significantly change the reply or make such reply unsuitable. Mr. Fromm strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney in their state in order to ensure proper advice is received. By using this site you understand and agree that there is no attorney client relationship or confidentiality between you and the attorney responding. This site should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney that practices in the subject area in your jurisdiction, who is familiar with your specific facts and all of the circumstances and with whom you have an attorney client relationship. The law changes frequently and varies from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. The information and materials provided are general in nature, and may not apply to a specific factual or legal circumstance described in the question or omitted from the question. Circular 230 Disclaimer - Any information in this comment may not be used to eliminate or reduce penalties by the IRS or any other governmental agency.


  3. The fact that you have real estate at issue (and that there are various avenues that you might pursue to have the real estate transferred into your name) makes it even more essential that you obtain the assistance of competent legal counsel. Additionally, inheritance tax is due from the date of the decedent's passing, with penalty and interest accruing each day that passes without the tax being paid. Please feel free to contact our offices to discuss potential representation in this matter.

    The Answer to this Question by poster is intended to be used as general information only, is not to be considered legal advice and should be used only as a starting point for addressing your legal issues. It is not a substitute for an in-person or telephone consultation with an attorney licensed to practice in your jurisdiction about your specific legal issue, and you should not rely upon such Legal Information. You should speak to an attorney for more specific counsel after consideration of all pertinent information. Attorney Liotta maintains a license to practice law in PA only. If you wish to discuss your question in greater detail, please feel free to contact Attorney Liotta by way of the contact information included on his profile. If you found this post to be helpful, please show your appreciation by upvoting it.

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