Massachusetts has undergone massive reform in their probate code. I am experiencing confusion on the statute of limitations. The new law requires within three years of death. Mass previously was within 50 years of death. My question is does the new SOL cover deaths prior to March 31 2012. Example: Mr. x is an asbestos client. He dies and an administration is done naming his son as fiduciary. His son dies in 2006 and no follow up administration is done for the fiduciary or the claimant as there are no assets from the asbestos claim. In January of 2012, assets become available making it necessary to administer both estates. All heirs are in agreement regarding a PR. Is the date of death (I know the successor estate is an exception to the SOL but how about the fiduciary's estate?)
Country relating to Question: United States
State (if USA): Massachusetts
new written materials- on line web cam of last seminar (about 6 hours worth) - excellent material but not specific enough for individual issues such as this -
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I am in Massachusetts and willing to assist with what I can find for you. However, it is 4 in the AM at the moment and I just picked up this question -- I can get back to it about noon or 1 pm today if you do not mind waiting a little bit longer? Obviously I have to do a bit of hunting around because I have not run into the issue yet and I do not think I know anyone else who has. If that is not acceptable please let me know and we can cancel the question for you. Let me know.
If you can get me an answer by noon today I'll wait
Hello again Joni
I actually just got back online. I believe that your question is answered in Ch 190B - Section 3-108 (4) which states: "(4) if no proceeding concerning the succession or administration of the estate has occurred within 3 years after decedent's death, a formal testacy proceeding may be commenced at any time thereafter for the sole purpose of establishing a devise of property which the devisee or the devisee's successors and assigns possessed in accordance with the will or property which was not possessed or claimed by anyone by virtue of the decedent's title during the 3-year period, and the order of the court shall be limited to that property".
The right to the proceeds of a lawsuit is a right in property of the deceased person. "property which was not possessed or claimed by anyone by virtue of the decedent's title during the 3-year period, and the order of the court shall be limited to that property" -- It seems to me that you can probate the fiduciary's estate under this provision -- limited to the proceeds of any asbestos lawsuit.
Please let me know if you have any further questions.
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