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Ask Law Educator, Esq. Your Own Question
Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 111482
Experience:  Experienced in Trust and Succession Law, including Louisiana Laws
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I wrote you yesterday evening regarding payment regarding

Customer Question

I wrote you yesterday evening regarding payment regarding payment from my brother's estate by his personal representative. Just to clarify this matter prior to my contacting a lawyer in Wisconsin to file a Motion to Compel the personal representative has the authority to pay me for the expenses incurred for the cremation of my brother and for the expenses incurred for getting the family home in Milwaukee ready to be put on the market for sale. There is currently $14,000.00 in funds in this account from a money market account and a check in the amount of $5,000.00 (stock being cashed out) that should be placed in the account shortly (total $19,000.00). My total expenses are $17,500.00 which is a substantial amount of money. The attorney who handled the appointment of the personal representative wants me to be paid after the sale of the house (which has been on the market for almost 90 days with no activity). I may be waiting years for reimbursement. Other expenses regarding the house have come up (like the revamping of an electrical box) but I have declined to pay anything further until I am reimbursed for the monies I have already expended. The monthly expenses on the home - electric bill, taxes, snow shoveling, gas and anything else will need to be paid now that my ex-sister-in-law is going to be living in Charleston, SC until spring. I am retired and live on a fixed income and right now since my back up monies are tied up in this estate I am not inclined to be paying more money to help with the estate when my sister has paid nothing and done nothing. In short, if I don't recover these funds I don't have any money to pay for any additional estate expenses. Let me know how I need to handle this. Thanks.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Estate Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.

You have no duty to continue paying the expenses of the estate, those payments should come from the estate funds. If you are due money you may pursue your demand through the court if the PR and the attorney are seeking to delay payment from proceeds of a house sale that may never occur and you can get the court to order them to pay you out of the existing trust funds.

Unfortunately, if your payment exhausts all of the estate funds, someone will then have to pay taxes to maintain the house until it is sold, so that is another consideration for you to make in deciding how you want to proceed and you may want to take only 1/2 of what you are due now and then the remainder when the house sells so you can make sure the estate has enough assets to maintain the house to get it sold.

By the way, please do not forget to leave positive feedback for the experts who assist you as they are not employees of this site and get no credit for spending time with customers when the customer does not leave positive feedback. Thank you.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I am confused. Last evening I spoke with Barrister and he indicated to me that the personal representative has the authority to reimbursement for my expenses for my brother's cremation and for the monies paid to get the home ready for sale. I feel that I am a creditor and deserve to be paid just like other creditors and should not have to wait until the house sells. As long as I was shelling out the money for the real estate sale preparation everything seemed to be fine but now that I want my money it is a big deal. Barrister also indicated that I could file a Motion to Compel with the probate court. With respect to the monthly expenses for the upkeep and repair of the real estate ---- these expenses are the responsibility of both myself and my sister and if the funds are exhausted paying me what is owed to me as a creditor, I feel that we both should pay our share of these monthly expenses and this amount deposited into the estate's assets.
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your reply.
You do have the rights to reimbursement. I agree and that is what I said above, if you read it again carefully.
You are a creditor and do deserve payment, but if you force the estate to pay you and that takes all of the cash out of the estate, then you are going to have to find some way to pay the continued estate bills until the property sells.
Yes, if you insist on payment, you can file a motion to compel and the court will order payment as long as it does not bankrupt the estate and you are indeed entitled to payment and also an order compelling the sale of the house and the court can order a forced sale to prevent the other representative from delaying the sale.