Interested Persons in Palm City Probate

Interested persons in Palm City probate have rights to pursue what they are entitled to. An attorney can see that your wishes are respected and that you receive what you are entitled to in court. Reach out to an attorney today.

Interested Persons and Who Qualifies in Martin County

The definition of an interested person varies depending upon the proceeding and it may even change throughout the course of the probate administration. For example, creditors are not typically interested persons at the outset of administration prior to filing a claim but after they do file a claim, a creditor typically becomes an interested person.

The most important right of an interested person is to be given proper notice of any proceeding that is likely to affect that person’s interest in the probate estate. People might invoke their rights to protect their interests to make sure that they receive all to which they are entitled.

Limitations to an Interested Person’s Rights

These rights can be limited. When it comes to notice, there is typically a specific period of notice that an interested person must be given and the amount of time depends somewhat upon the manner in which the interested person is served. For example, if the interested person is served via formal notice which often will entail certified mail return receipt then the interested person has 20 days from the time or the date on which they are served to file an answer in the proceeding.

Conflicts Between Interested Persons and Personal Representatives

Conflicts are typically resolved either through negotiation or, if negotiation is unsuccessful, through court proceedings. Sometimes alternative methods of resolution such as mediation or arbitration may also be used.

One example of a conflict might involve a petition for appointment of a personal representative where there is no will. There may be multiple people with the same interest in the estate, none of which is entitled to a greater priority than the other. Other examples of conflicts might involve asset values as listed on an inventory or on a petition for discharge of personal representative if the accompanying final accounting is inadequate.

Common Misconceptions

One misconception about rights of interested persons in Palm City probate is that it is not always about the people who appear to be directly affected. There may be others who have an underlying interest. For example, on a homestead petition, there have been examples where creditors are omitted but, as interested persons, should have been given adequate notice of those proceedings.

Retirement Accounts Post Mortem

When someone dies, generally the plan assets will be distributed in accordance with the plan rules. If the decedent has named beneficiaries, then those persons will typically receive the benefit of the accounts. If the decedent failed to name a beneficiary, then the rules must be consulted for the default. Note that some tax-qualified plans, such as 401k’s, require that the assets of the plan participant be distributed to the participant’s spouse at death, regardless of who the participant listed on the beneficiary designation form, unless the spouse signed a waiver.

If the person had not yet retired or the account was already being used, that is unlikely to affect the identity of the beneficiary but it may affect the time period over which the beneficiary must take required minimum distributions. Required minimum distributions in most cases carry income tax consequences.

Speak to an Attorney Who Can Help

While probating an estate against an estate administrator can bring about an exceptional amount of stress, it is often the only way to challenge what an administrator claims to be right and what you know is right. Interested persons in Palm City probate have the right to pursue their entitled share of an estate, but challenging an estate administrator can be difficult. Let an attorney help. Reach out to an experienced legal professional today.

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