A woman died and had a will. She was predeceased by three kids. She has 5 grandkids and and executor of her will. The executor is trying to sell the house.
Yes. The executor must notify the grand kids, as they are considered heirs-at-law. They must be notified for the filing of a probate petition. However, the timing and method of notice depends on the type of probate filed (i.e. Formal v. Informal Probate). The process may be further complicated if any of the grandchildren are minors. As for selling the house, notice depends on the terms of the Will. Does the Will give the executor the power of sale? You really should speak with an attorney to assist you throughout the process. There are many quirks with the probate courts that only an attorney would know.
Yes - absolutely. In addition, depending on the terms of the will, the executor (now, personal representative) may have to file for a license to sell the property and will have to send notice of the license application to the grandchildren.
There are definitely some formal steps that need to be adhered to. I highly recommend that the personal representative at least talk to an attorney. Any legal fees she incurs in her duties as personal representative can be paid out of the estate funds. I certainly handle these issues, as do many attorneys you can find using the "Find a Lawyer" link above.
Generally, if a will is being probated, heirs at law would need to be identified and given notice. This allows them to object to the will or the appointment of the executor, and to be aware of what is going on. Beyond that, it is not feasible to say whether heirs at law are entitled to notice before sale of a decedent's residence.
Why? Because sometimes it isn't the decedent's house - it could be in a trust. The beneficiary under the will may not be the children/grandchildren, etcetera.
That said, it is frequently the case that the children/grandchildren have the right to notice of a proposed sale, because they may be residuary beneficiaries and contingent residuary beneficiaries, meaning that the real estate in the probate estate would pass to them if not needed to pay estate debts.
Anyway, if you are concerned that the estate is not being administered properly, you should consult with an attorney - you may find everything is in order, or you may find that you need to intervene and express objections.
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