I need to know what the Statue of limitations are for Probate in the State of Ohio? Is there a statue in Small Claims Court also on a Probate issue?
I think maybe what you are asking is "When must the probate estate be filed?"
There is no time limit for filing a Will and starting the probate process. There are many parties who can force the issue, including next of kin, inheritors, legatees (persons named in the Will), creditors and others.
If a named executor is dragging his or her feet, other interested parties can apply to the court to be appointed Executor, claiming that the person nominated in the Will is irresponsible.
Not every death requires an estate administration, but you need a lawyer to tell you whether one is needed or not. There are 3 levels of probate administration. They go by the shorthand of "Record Only," "No Administration" and "Full Administration."
"No Administration" is sort of the small claims version of probate, but involves the same court and much of the same paperwork as a "Full Administration." It is possible to do it without a lawyer, but difficult to do and the court personnel are not going to be able to help you figure out the effect of non-probate assets on the estate being administered. Since most expert attorneys in this area will provide an initial consultation without charge, you should contact one.
I am not sure exactly what type of issue you are questioning, but there are different limits for different things. An action to challenge the validity of a decedent's will must be filed within three months that an affidavit stating that all interested persons received notice of the probate is filed with the Court. This can only be done in the probate court. Each act of probate based upon a court order may be appealed within 30 days of the date of the entry or within 30 days of an entry approving a final account, depending upon what the order did. Creditors whose claims have been rejected have two months to file an action to collect the debt in the court of common pleas or municipal court (depending upon the amount) or the claim is waived and cannot be collected. If you dispute actions taken by the executor/administrator, you are probably limited to the appeals limit on court actions authorizing or approving the executor/administrator's action. Actions related to a probate (other than collection of a debt by a creditor) must be filed in the probate court only. There is no "small claims" section in probate, although some courts have magistrates to hear cases more quickly or mediators to help parties reach a non-judicial settlement. If you think you have an issue, you should consult with an experienced probate litigator to evaluate the merits of your claim and whether any of the limitations discussed above prevent you from brining it. Best wishes for a satisfactory resolution of your issues.
This response contemplates only the laws of Ohio and is not intended to apply to other jurisdictions. None of the information in this response should be used or relied upon as legal advice or legal opinion about specific matters, facts, situations or issues. Viewing it does not establish an attorney-client relationship between you and Sherrille D. Akin, the law firm of Isaac, Brant, Ledman & Teetor LLP, or any of its individual attorneys
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