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Who can open probate when there is no spouse and no living relative with enough funds to hire a lawyer?

Kansas City, MO |

My child's father died unexpectly and had no will. His parents are deceased. He has 1 sibling. 2 blood children and 1 child that he signed the birth certificate but could not physically have fathered due to a tragic accident 10 years ago. All the sibling and I want to do is get everything filed so the "squabbling" will end and all the ex-wives will be informed of their rights in the estate. We are sure there is going to be a fight and none of us have the money for the state required bond. What can we do?

Attorney Answers 1


Anyone with an interest in the estate (any potential heir or person with interest in the property to be distributed - like a creditor) may open the estate in probate. A bond is not required to do so. However, a bond would typically be required of the person appointed as Administrator of the estate. If there are adequate assets in the estate, you could petition the court to appoint a neutral third party (like a lawyer or CPA) as the Administrator. The bond (if required) and fees of the Administrator would then come out of the estate assets. This would likely increase the cost of the probate administration, but you would not need to post money up front to have the administration completed.

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