Probate case information.

I have been named as a beneficiary in the estate of my step-father. The estate is very simple, consisting only of $40,000 in cash. 16 months have passed since I recieved the letter. I am unable to get any information regarding the current status of the case from the executor, the court or the law firm representing the executor (and the deceased). Is it possible, in California, to get a court ordered accounting or audit of some kind? How would I go about this?

Asked on June 11, 2009 under Estate Planning, California

Answers:

L.M., Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

I would write a letter to the executor (and if probate has been opened, with a cc to the probate court) and ask for the accounting that should have been provided to you.  The executor has a fiduciary duty to provided the beneficiaries with an accounting.  Now it is possible that probate has not been completed because these can take quite a while, but with such a small estate, it would surprise me that they did not do a transfer without probate which can be done under certain circumstances when the estate has under $100K.  Start with the letter because it is always good to put such requests in writing.  If you don't get anywhere, you might need a lawyer to send a letter for you or to make a phone call.


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