If my father’s estate has been in probate for 8 months and no creditors claims have been made, can we distribute the money now without waiting for the full year?

My father’s estate is small and very simple. The court told us that it cannot close the case until my father has been deceased for 1 year. Can we distribute the money without worrying about future claims? He did not owe on credit cards or have outstanding balances.

Asked on July 14, 2015 under Estate Planning, Arizona

Answers:

B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

If a judge has told you to wait... then you need to wait.  You don't want to face a contempt or penalty for violating any specific instructions by a judge.  With that being said, however, you are not without options.  You can file a motion for an early whole or partial distribution.  If you aren't sure on how to handle the judge, consider obtaining a consultation with a probate attorney to walk you through that process.


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