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Probate And Estate Administration: Lessons From Jerry Brown Jr.

Posted by attorney Evan Guthrie

Jerry Brown Jr. passed away after being involved in a fatal accident with Dallas Cowboys teammate and friend Josh Brent in December of 2012. Although not widely known, Brown Jr. a professional football player and was a member of the Dallas Cowboys practice team after playing on various other teams and leagues. There are many estate administration and probate lessons that can be learned from Jerry Brown Jr.

The biggest lesson in this situation is that the duties of a personal representative or executor of an estate in a probate case may be responsible to handle a wrongful death claim on behalf of the deceased. A wrongful death lawsuit can occur when a person dies as a result of the negligent, wrongful and or intentional acts of another. In this case, Jerry Brown Jr. was involved in a fatal auto accident as a passenger while Josh Brent was driving. Brent was later arrested on charges of intoxication manslaughter after police at the scene gave Brent a field sobriety test, which he failed. Brent also had a previous arrest in 2009 for drunk driving. Evidence in a criminal case may be used in a later civil case for wrongful death. In some jurisdictions a personal representative or executor may be responsible for bring forth a wrongful death suit as part of their duties and should stay abreast to all developments and options. Brown Jr. was reported to be expecting a child before his death and that may also play a role. Brown Jr. did not have a regular roster spot season long contract on a NFL team that would have provided a lucrative income, but a wrongful death suit may account for future earnings and lost prospective earning capacity if it can be evidenced that a NFL contract were likely.

Another lesson could be the potential difficult situation of someone allegedly responsible for a death and also a close friend or family member being present at a funeral or memorial of the deceased. Brown Jr. and Brent were close friends and roommates at the time of Brown Jr.'s death from their days as college football teammates. Those in charge of arrangements may want to get a consensus of family members and especially the parent or spouse of the deceased before inviting someone that may be responsible for that person's death. Someone in charge of the estate may also act as a bridge between the families of the deceased and the person allegedly responsible to help smooth any tensions or bad feelings. For more to this article please visit and

Evan Guthrie Law Firm is licensed to practice law throughout the state of South Carolina. The Evan Guthrie Law Firm practices in the areas of estate planning probate personal injury and divorce and family law. For further information visit his website at . Evan Guthrie Law Firm 164 Market Street Suite 362 Charleston SC 29401 843-926-3813

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