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Loren, Attorney
Category: Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 34402
Experience:  30 years experience in the practice of estate law.
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If a respondent objects to or contests an Application of

Customer Question

Customer: if a respondent objects to or contests an Application for Letters of Administration stating "Specifically, the Respondent disputes that “[t]here is a necessity for administration of the Estate of the Decedent to investigate assets and claims of the Estate and take possession of property of the Estate” can they then later submit a claim against the estate requesting reimbursement for expenses in excess of $30,000?
JA: Thanks. Can you give me any more details about your issue?
Customer: Decedent died intestate two heirs took control of estate - changed locks on home & removed property, laid claim to life insurance policy, expended $20k+ on funeral when decedent requested cremation, changed names and address & forwarded all mail coming to decedents home. I retained an attorney who advised that an application for admin was needed and that this would be a simple process to have admin appointed. Opposing counsel objected stating no need for Administration due to no claims and no further assets - told my attorney not to file application or it would cost me more & I would look petty. Since then my attorney has taken a backseat. Administrator has done some questionable things regarding the estate but my attorney said the Judge has a relationship with Administrator and there is nothing that can be done. Notice to creditors was posted in early June - claim of $30K was made 11/23/15 so far Admin has neither accepted or rejected claim. He was also to subpoena documents re: validity of beneficiary (heir says the decedent "called in" and changed beneficiary to her & that there isn't proof of designation. It has been substantiated that when decedent retired there was no designation made on original paperwork)
JA: OK got it. Last thing — JustAnswer charges a fee (generally around $18) to post your type of question to Estate Law Experts (you only pay if satisfied). There are a couple customers ahead of you. Are you willing to wait a bit?
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Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Estate Law
Expert:  Loren replied 1 year ago.

Good afternoon. Thank you for requesting me.

Expert:  Loren replied 1 year ago.

Which state?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Texas -
Dallas County
Pretty abbreviated version of what has actually taken place - Administrator even allowed other heirs to come earlier than the designated date to distribute property from the home. Said he felt pressured by other heirs. Allowed them to take anything they wanted & they did.
Expert:  Loren replied 1 year ago.

And, you have filed a claim against the estate for the funds you are owed?

You can file suit against estate for your claim and against the Administrator for violating your rights. It may be that you need a more aggressive attorney.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No, I do not have a claim filed - it is a claim made by one of the other heirs - an heir that originally objected to the appointment of an administrator saying there was no necessity for administration because there were no additional assets or claims on the estate. In an email from O/C that was forwarded to me - he, o/c, states that if I go forward with requesting an administrator that it would cost me more money & that the other heir would request reimbursement for funeral and other expenses (expenditures that were not approved by or of a benefit of all the heirs)I would love to switch to a live call but at this moment I am at work and unable to. I can in about 45 mins.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I most definitely agree re: aggressive attorney. That is the conundrum that I am facing.
Expert:  Loren replied 1 year ago.

What would you like to see happen with the estate that is not happening?

Expert:  Loren replied 1 year ago.

Are you still online with me?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Originally, to have an unbiased party to oversee the probate process & obtain possession of property belonging to the estate & compile a complete accounting of all the assets of the estate. The heirs that had harmed decedent & taken control of the property of decedent & are being investigated for abuse (financial as well as physical), a matter that my attorney says is criminal and not something to present to the probate judge, also had taken personal property both before and after the death of the decedent. I believe there to be cause for breach of fiduciary duty/undue influence/fraud action and this was discussed in my initial consultation with my attorney and why the application for administration was being pursued. The life insurance policy documentation (along with other documents re: small bank account & other small term life policies) have been requested for over one year now. The heir was asked to produce these documents as well as the administrator no one has followed through. The only thing received has been some bad copy & paste documents & some email exchanges between the heir and her Employer's benefits/HR person (which was also the former employer of the decedent) stating that there was no signature card that the decedent "called in" and made the beneficiary change. I believe the administrator has breached his fiduciary duty by his actions regarding the personal property (furnishings) of the estate, under valuing the vehicle and selling it to his employers son as well as questionable dealings with the real property. At this point I just want to know what options I have as a beneficiary of the estate. Who does the administrator have a duty to? I am incurring attorney's fees by making these same inquiries to my attorney who either doesn't answer directly or tells me she is going to address it with the Administrator ("he has to make you whole") or after finding out that the Judge favors the administrator that she is not taking any matter regarding the administrator to the Judge because she has to continue working in her court.
Expert:  Loren replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for the additional information.

Expert:  Loren replied 1 year ago.

You have the right to demand an accounting of the estate from the administrator. If the administrator fails to do so or the accounting reveals inconsistencies you can file a complaint alleging specific breaches of the fiduciary duties owed to you and other heirs. If the probate court holds in your favor the administrator can be removed and replaced by the court, forced to repay damages to the estate and otherwise sanctioned with costs and fees.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
You don't happen to practice in Dallas, Texas do you?
Expert:  Loren replied 1 year ago.

Sorry, no.

Expert:  Loren replied 1 year ago.

If you have no further questions please remember to rate my service to you.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I am still a bit confused about my original question whether a respondent can originally object (in Feb 2015) to letters of administration stating that there is no need to incur those expenses due to there being no additional assets or claims on the estate and then turn around 9 months later (Nov. 2015) and file a Unsecured claim for $30,000 (+). (Court ordered Dependent Administrator in April 2015)
Expert:  Loren replied 1 year ago.

Yes, there is no prohibition to filling a lawful claim simply because they previosly objected to the IA.