If you owe money on a promissory note to your father and you father passes away, does the balance of the note have to be paid to the estate?

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If you owe money on a promissory note to your father and you father passes away, does the balance of the note have to be paid to the estate?

Asked on August 7, 2016 under Estate Planning, New Jersey

Answers:

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

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

You still owe a debt to someone who then passes away, you then owe repayment to that person's estate. The obligation to repay a debt does not die with a creditor. The assets of an estate, including any debts owed, will go to pay the debts of the estate and the remainder, if any, to the beneficiaries/heirs. The fact is that there is a process for collecting such debt. If there is a Will, the executor is responsible for gathering estate assets, including collecting debts. If there is no Will, the appointed personal representative will make a demand on you, and if necessary, sue you in the name of the estate to collect.


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