Personal Representative

Opening The Estate Account Takes Patience

By: Statewide Probate® www.statewideprobate.com A client recently wrote, “….Just opened the estate account. Merciful heavens, childbirth was easier. Such a lengthy detailed process that took over an hour.” Yes, depending on the bank or credit union, and the particular branch, and the experience of the employee opening the account, it can take a while for… read more

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Grandchildren Inherit in Probate Unless Otherwise Stated

A common myth in Florida: in order to inherit from a parent, a child must survive the parent. In Florida, that is not true. A pre-deceased child does inherit when the parent dies but does so through their own children (in other words, through the grandchildren of the person who just died). Let’s say John,… read more

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Hazard Insurance: Can’t Live With It, Can’t Live Without It

Where real property is being managed by the Personal Representative of a Florida estate, that person is often faced with asking themselves: what do I do about hazard insurance? When is it due for renewal? Will they renew the coverage? Homestead property- the deceased person’s permanent residence- is not necessarily the responsibility of the Personal… read more

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Uncovering What Your Relative Left, and To Whom

When a loved one dies, what can you conclude from their bank or financial account statements? Not much. With increasing frequency, people are setting up bank accounts and investment accounts with a “designation of beneficiary” to transfer on death (TOD). Those stocks or funds do not go through probate. So if the next-of-kin or designated… read more

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Taking Care of a Florida Home During Probate

Many estates involve the decedent’s home, which passes to their children or other relatives who live in different states. This often poses a challenge for the beneficiaries to now have an additional house to take care of. For this reason, we want to share some useful tips for the new owners. First, be sure the… read more

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Practical Tips For Personal Representatives of Florida Estates

Here are a few tips for someone who finds himself or herself suddenly faced with the overwhelming task of handling a probate estate in Florida: Have their mail forwarded to your house. You should go through each piece of mail to assist you in identifying all of the creditors and assets of the Florida Estate…. read more

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Why Trustees Open a Florida Probate Administration

One of the big reasons one would consider setting up a Living Trust (technically called “inter vivos trust,” meaning a trust created while you are alive) is to avoid a probate administration after your death. By correctly titling all of your assets (except for personal effects, cash and other assets which are not “titled”) in… read more

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Top Five Mistakes in Florida Wills

#5 Unqualified Executor This is a common mistake because most states have no residency requirement for executors. A Personal Representative (“PR”) in Florida must be either a Florida resident or related to the decedent, within the prescribed range, by blood or marriage. Many retirees and snowbirds get caught on this problem when they name their… read more

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Finally, a Book to Recommend

People often ask us if we can recommend estate administration or estate planning services, software or books, and we’ve been looking, honestly. Sadly, the answer is usually “no.” Florida law has just enough oddities that anything written for a national audience almost always fails to spot all the places where Florida law differs. But we’re… read more

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Debts Also Die

You would not know it from some bill collectors who hound people even 10 years after the debt was due, but nearly all debts die of old age eventually. Legally, it is called a “statute of limitations,” which means that after a certain number of years the courts will not enforce the debt. If a… read more

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