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My father passed. I am the heir, according to the Executor/WILL. He says he MUST put every asset of my father's in HIS name?

Clearwater, FL |

There is a valid WILL according to the Attorney he has hired, but won't give us their name. Who can we ask to protect us? This man has NO idea what he's doing. He says he gets 10% of the entire Estate, the taxes will run 30% or more and the Attorney will take about 30%, WHY IS THERE A WILL THEN?

Attorney Answers 5

  1. What you have described sounds very much like the person in possession of the will is trying to keep assets that he does not have a right too and preventing you from seeing the will. You should hire an attorney immediately, as he can have the person in possession of the will turn it over to probate court and allow you, as an heir, to see it too.

  2. While I am not licensed to practice in FL, ordinarily, a person acting as the personal representative of the estate (executrix/executor (if valid will), or administratrix/administrator (if no valid will)) does not have to place property in their name before they can transfer it to anyone else; if an interim transfer is necessary, it should be done so as to make clear the owner is the "estate" and not a specific individual. As the other attorney advised, your facts may present a situation of "self-dealing" by the executor, though without a thorough examination of the facts, this is just a hypothesis. Insofar as my point, the PR can manage property "in the name of" the estate, and that is the way it should be until the transfer actually occurs, because otherwise there may be issues of self-dealing, combining estate and personal funds/assets, etc.. Once the PR gets ready to transfer, they do so in the name of/on behalf of the estate through various types of transfer documents (e.g., an executor's deed, possibly signing a vehicle title in their position as PR, etc.); that way, it is clear that any such transfer is technically between the estate and the recipient, not the recipient and some third party (whether or not the PR).

  3. You should hire your own probate attorney in the county where your father's will is being probated, and you should do this NOW.

    The contents of this answer should be considered friendly advice, not legal advice and the answer should not be construed to constitute an attorney-client relationship. If you'd like actual legal advice, call me at 954-567-4100. Also, if you liked this answer did, be sure to click the thumbs-up button

  4. Something sounds very wrong here. I am in Dunedin and can give you a quick complementary consultation in my office. My number is 727-736-5300.

  5. I assume "He" is the attorney you mentioned. He should not be refusing to give you his name. You can hire another attorney to probate the estate or can contest it. Also, the 10% does not seem right. Accourding to Florida Statute chapter 733 an attorney in entitled to reasonable compensation.

    Statements made are for informational purposes and are merely a legal opinion.

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