What are our rights if my mother died 7 years ago but her husband didn’t probate her Will until he got remarried last year and now the value of the estate has gone down?

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What are our rights if my mother died 7 years ago but her husband didn’t probate her Will until he got remarried last year and now the value of the estate has gone down?

He has never provided an accounting and has offered to buy out her children’s’ equity interest in her home at its current appraised value which is substantially lower than it was then. The home has always been solely in her name but his new young wife wants to make sure she’s on the deed. Do we have to accept his offer at today’s price?

Asked on December 27, 2014 under Estate Planning, Georgia

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your loss and for the issues that have arisen.  Please consult with an attorney as soon as you can.   While the value of your Mother's estate will be a date of death value, the reality of the current market value is going to throw a wrench in the buy out.  The probate is a public record so you can review the file any time you wish.  Remember that assets that were jointly held by her and her husband are not estate assets for probate purposes and passed to him automatically at the time of her death.  If he is not on the deed then why do you have to sell the property at all?  Or offer to buy him out at the lower rate and wait until the property value increases again.  There are options here.  Good luck.


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