Wht are our rights, if my siblings and I are the heirs to my late aunt’s estate?

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Wht are our rights, if my siblings and I are the heirs to my late aunt’s estate?

She died 2 years ago. Our second cousin had been asked by her to be the executor of her estate. His attorney is requiring us to sign a statement saying we had received a check for our share and releasing him from his duties prior to him sending the checks. He claims this is a common practice but it seems wrong to us to sign something saying we had received a check we did not receive. He claims this is similar to an accident with property damage where you’re asked to sign and return to the insurance carrier a release prior to receiving a settlement check. Should we sign the releases or demand the check first?

Asked on January 3, 2013 under Estate Planning, Georgia

Answers:

Catherine Blackburn / Blackburn Law Firm

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You are correct to question this practice.  I know that personal injury attorneys do act this way, but in 30 years I always declined to do it. Probate attorneys may also follow such a practice, but I do not.  I would demand the check first.  If the attorney is not willing to issue the check or wait until the executor issues the check, I would contact the Probate court and ask what to do.


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