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I am executor of my uncle's estate and the only heir he

Hello! I am...

Hello! I am executor of my uncle's estate and the only heir he named in his will. He had several cars in his possession at the time of his death. One of the 4 he had in his possession for 6 years, but he never drove it and we found out it was titled to his brother - who died 4 years ago, but the brother's estate was never probated. I am now the baillee of this car and don't know what to do with it. Everything else in my uncle's estate is wrapped up. A relative came forward a few months ago and said he was opening up probate for my uncle's brother and would be the heir of his estate. But that hasn't happened. Do I include this car as part of my uncle's estate since the titled owner is dead and my uncle had possession of it for so long? Do I turn it over to someone? Thanks in advance for the help!

Lawyer's Assistant: Since estate law varies from place to place, can you tell me what state this is in?

My uncle lived in KY. His brother lived in Ohio. The car in question is in KY. Thanks!

Lawyer's Assistant: What documents or supporting evidence do you have?

We have the car, the title to the car, and the keys. The title is in my uncle's brother's name.

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

I don't think so. :)

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Answered in 2 minutes by:
11/28/2017
Damien Bosco
Damien Bosco, Attorney
Category: Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 3,649
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Hello: My name is ***** ***** I am an attorney. Please give me a moment to review your question. I may ask some questions to clarify issues.

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
Thank you!

You could take the steps to claim title if the vehicle is in your possession (or in your uncle's estate's possession). You would have to claim the vehicle has been abandoned. Since the brother died, then you would notify the executor in his will, if he has one, to remove the vehicle. So, you have to give a chance for the uncle's estate's representative to remove the vehicle before claiming it was abandoned. If there is no one representing the estate, you could attempt to claim it as abandoned since it has been so long. But it would be better to provide notice in writing first anyway.

Do you have any further questions? I am happy to answer them.

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
there is no known will or estate representative. No one wants to fool with it I guess, since the car seemed to have been the only possession. Do you know what I would have to do to claim it as abandoned property (in KY) or where I would turn to find out that information? Is there any issue with the fact that the car is titled in Ohio (since that is where the brother lived prior to his death) but the car had been in KY for so long on my uncle's property? I just want to make sure I am heading in the right direction to start that process. thank you!

You are welcome. I would contact Kentucky DMV first because that would be easiest since you live there and that is where the vehicle is located. A visit to the DMV would be helpful because you can speak to someone about it. There would be an application form to file also. You would have to know the year, make, model and VIN most likely for the application. Since the title is through Ohio, there may be an issue regarding contacting the Ohio DMV, but since you live in Kentucky and want to transfer title to yourself a Kentucky resident, it is better to make sure you know what the Kentucky DMV needs from you to title it in your name.

Do you have any further questions. I am happy to answer them for you.

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
since the probate case is still opened for my uncle, do I need to advise the court of anything, ask them to declare the car as abandoned
or just proceed to contact the DMV?

You would not have to notify the court. You would just need to document or account for what you are doing in your own files. Basically, as the executor, you are collecting an asset of the estate and distributing the asset or money from a sale to the heirs (which is you). So, there is no need for the court to declare the property as abandoned. Going through the DMV process should suffice. Like I said, though, you would still want to provide written notice to anyone who could inherit from the brother's estate in case later they attempt to claim the property was not abandoned, even though it has been 4 years and that would be enough time to claim abandonment.

Do you have any further questions?

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
NO. Thank you!

You are welcome!

Damien Bosco
Damien Bosco, Attorney
Category: Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 3,649
Experience: Helping you with your legal questions.
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