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legalgems, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 10484
Experience:  Just Answer consultant at Self employed
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My sister died in June My olders sister and I are all her

Customer Question

My sister died in June My olders sister and I are all her living family.
JA: What state are you in? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: Oregon but she lived in Fort Mohave az with a upside down mortgage
JA: Has anything been filed or reported?
Customer: We have some death certificates and are not sure what we have to do now.
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: She has a large amount of over due bills and beside her house she has a piece of empty property in Bullhead City Az and we are not sure if there is a clear title or an overdue mortgage on it.
Submitted: 2 months ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Loren replied 2 months ago.

I am Loren, a licensed attorney for over 30 yrs. Thank you for your patience as I review the question. I will post my response shortly.

Expert:  Loren replied 2 months ago.

My condolences for your loss.

Is the estate solvent, or do the debts exceed the value of the assets?

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
We are not sure. If the Bullhead city is clear that might have some value. We are leaning to the belief that she was way of the top in unpaid bills.
Her car is old and valueless and her furnishings were woth nothing. She had been very sick for the last 5 yrs and has a lot of medical bills. Was was on Medicare and we think medicaid.
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
What can sister and i do to settle this estate?
Expert:  legalgems replied 2 months ago.

I am sorry to hear of your family's loss.

If a person receives government subsidies, and the estate is not insolvent, the state can actually pursue "estate recovery" from the estate-basically seeking reimbursement for expenses paid on behalf of the decedent.

So the first step would be to determine the value of any assets to determine if the estate is insolvent. If it is insolvent there is no need to probate the estate- someone with a financial interest will likely probate it so that assets can be liquidated so they can recover their money (for example, government subsidies).

If there are in fact assets that exceed debt, then an interested party may petition the probate surrogate court in the county where the decedent last resided, as they have jurisdiction.

If there is propery located outside that state, "ancillary probate" needs to be opened in that state to dispose of that property.

If one assumes the role of personal representative it is best to hire an attorney since it is a fiduciary role and the fiduciary duties apply, exposing the personal representative to liability in the eent of any errors/negligence.

Please respond here if you have questions and I will do my best to assist!

Thank you.

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Thank you and take care.

Expert:  legalgems replied 2 months ago.

Hello again; just checking in to see how things worked out;

If you have no further questions a positive rating is most appreciated (at no additional cost to you) and allows the site to credit my account for the time spent assisting you!

if you have further questions please don't hesitate to reach out to me here on Just Answerand I will do my best to get you the requested information.

The above information is for educational purposes only. A consultation with a private attorney is recommended so they can apply the law to your specific facts, and suggest the best course of action. An attorney can be located here:
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