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An attorney notified beneficiaries of father's N.Y.S. estate as "closed." An investment account remains undistributed.

Syracuse, NY |

A beneficiary of father's estate purchased his house from his estate. The same beneficiary continues to receive, in the mailbox of decedent's house, father's statement from an investment account which executor never distributed to heirs , even though the beneficiary's attorney's had previously sent written notification(3Xs) to the estate attorney and executor of need to forward all decedent's mail to executor's address 'prior ' to closing estate. Apparently, the USPS never received notification to forward decedent's mail to executor of father's estate. The estate attorney proceeded and notified all beneficiaries that the N.Y.S. estate was closed. What must be done to: -stop delivery of father's mail to house -distribute the proceeds from father's unclosed account Thanks.

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Attorney answers 4


Certain assets (like bank and investment accounts) pass under the beneficiary designations on those accounts and not via an estate. Depending on the size of the investment account and the number of mistakes that you perceive in the administration, it may be worth your while to consult an attorney.

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The executor can contact the Investment account to find out whether any beneficiaries are listed and have those amounts distributed to the beneficiaries. Probate may not be required.

Every legal matter is fact specific, and there are often nuances in every case. This is intended for comment only, and does not create an attorney client relationship.


I agree with Attorneys Luthmann and Hill. The first question is "was the investment account a probate asset?" If so, then the executor will need to take the steps to distribute it. If not, then the beneficiaries thereof need to contact the brokerage firm to arrange for the distribution of said account. As noted by counsel, you may wish to retain counsel to deal with this problem and to make sure that there are not other issues in this estate. Good luck to you.

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The notification needs to be sent to the brokerage firm with proper documentation showing that the address needs to be corrected and that whomever is sending that letter has authority to do so.

The foregoing is not legal advice nor is it in any manner whatsoever meant to create or impute an attorney/client relationship.