What to do if my mother passed without a Will?

My mother passed away last week without a Will. I need to know what to do to file as executor of her estate. There is a house and car and personal belongings. She had bank accounts that i am joint owner on. There are 3 kids other then me and 2 of them are no longer in contact. The other brother has no problem with me handling everything.

Asked on June 26, 2018 under Estate Planning, Indiana

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

Since your mother passed without a Will, you need to go to the probate court in the county in which she died and make application to be appointed "Personal Representative". This is like an executor when there isn't a Will. If approved, you will administer the estate (pay off any creditors, inventory assets, and make arrangements for distributionn to the heirs). Also, there are procedures for adminstering "small estates" which are faster and cheaper than formal probate if the estate qualifies; you can check online for this information. Finally, as to any account on which your name appears, as the surviving owner those assets are yours outright and are not subject to probate.

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

Since your mother passed without a Will, you need to go to the probate court in the county in which she died and make application to be appointed "Personal Representative". This is like an executor when there isn't a Will. If approved, you will administer the estate (pay off any creditors, inventory assets, and make arrangements for distributionn to the heirs). Also, there are procedures for adminstering "small estates" which are faster and cheaper than formal probate if the estate qualifies; you can check online for this information. Finally, as to any account on which your name appears, as the surviving owner those assets are yours outright and are not subject to probate.


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