Probate Question- JT, Kristine Please Help! - Posted by IB (NJ)

Posted by Rick Harmon (CA) on April 15, 2006 at 16:55:39:

…Ted said it best. This better be a great deal so that you’re not wasting a lot of time (your’s and others’).

Here are the issues (no pun intended):

  1. Does the distribution of the estate follow the dictates of the decedent’s will, pursuant to testate estate administration? If so, “chain” out the interests.

  2. If the laws of intestate distribution (i.e., will is ignored) then every state has laws of consanguinity (think food chain) that dictates how the proceeds of the estate are to be distributed.

  3. Who is to serve as Personal Rep. is a separate matter. As described exactly in the original posting, “Lisa” could only become appointed executor if she survives “John.” This could pose a problem if Lisa and John are both deceased. However, if the will is successfully admitted to probate then “Sally” may be the logical administrator (i.e., person not named in will to “execute”).

  4. This could all be a moot point if Sally (or someone with a claim of interest) nominates you or another person (a “friendly” administrator). This way, you can purchase 100% of the estate irrespective of the fractional interests which, as Columbo would say, are “loose ends.”

Hope this helps.

Probate Question- JT, Kristine Please Help! - Posted by IB (NJ)

Posted by IB (NJ) on April 10, 2006 at 20:26:31:

Greetings All:

I’ve done a few probates but I’m working one that’s sort of taking me in unchartered waters. As such, I now have 2 questions. But first let me give the scenario:

Mary Smith owns a property and decides to deed half to her ‘friend’ John Thompson. Mary then draws up a Last Will and Testament and appoints John as Executor of her estate. While appointing John her Exec. she also states that " if he (John) predeceases me, or if for any reason fail to act as Executor then Lisa Graves is Executor to serve without Bond". She also gives 1/2 of her estate to John (the Executor), 1/4 to her son Bill, and the remaining 1/4 to her cousin Sally.

Bill (the son) then dies before his Mother Mary. Mary then dies sometime later. John then dies after Mary. The only one alive is Sally.

Here are my questions:

1)Who is the Executor of Mary’s estate? Would that be Lisa?

2)What happens to Bill’s portion of his Mother’s estate being that he predeceased Mary?

Note: Correct me if I’m wrong but John’s estate owns 75% of the house, while Sally owns 12.5%. I’m just not sure what happens to Bill’s share. I’m running this by my attorney later this week but wanted to know, based on what ‘typically’ happens (of course this depends on my state law) in these scenarios. I’m also aware that I have to hunt down Richard’s heirs.

Thanks much everyone.


Help! - Posted by Nike

Posted by Nike on April 11, 2006 at 08:14:04:


Bill’s share will depend on whether your state has an anti-lapse statute and how it’s written. Did Bill have children? If not, it’s possible the gift will fail.

Post-back after you’ve talked to your attorney. Good luck.

Per Stirpes - Posted by JT-IN

Posted by JT-IN on April 11, 2006 at 07:07:22:

Not to be confused with any diseases…

IB: Maybe this will help some… Short on time for now, maybe more ideas later… Do you have a copy of the Will…?

Per Stirpes–A method of dividing an estate among one’s surviving descendants. Each survivor receives only the amount that his/her immediate ancestor would have received if that ancestor had been alive at the time of the grantor’s death. The following example may make this clearer: Assume a person has 4 children – 3 sons and one daughter – each of whom survive, and leaves everything to “the children or their survivors, per stirpes”. In that case, each of the 4 children would receive 25% of the estate and the grandchildren receive nothing… If one of the 3 sons and the daughter have died, that leaves only 2 of the sons alive. If there is also 1 child of the deceased son (a grandchild) and 2 grandchildren from the deceased daughter. Under a per stirpes distribution, the 2 sons each get 25%, the 1 grandchild of the deceased son gets his/her father’s share of 25%, and the 2 children of the deceased daughter split her 25% share and receive 12.5% each. Compare with Per Capita.

Re: Probate Question- JT, Kristine Please Help! - Posted by Cletus

Posted by Cletus on April 11, 2006 at 01:00:12:


This is why nobody wants to live in New Jersey. If Mary deeds ?half? of her property to John, declaring Lisa will outlive John, here is where your problem starts. John?s cooked at this point. I watch the Sopranos, so I?m almost an expert on this.

Anyway, since Mary also gives half of her estate to John and only a quarter percent to her son Bill, with Sally getting the leftovers, my money?s on Sally. Bill has to go, and so that is how it was played out. I?m no Surelock Homes here, (that name was already taken), but I can smell a three week old fish with the best of them. At least down at Fernando?s Sushi Swap Meet and Auto Upholstery Fiesta. I?m sure they have these in your area. Check em out, their diamond tufted trout is worth twice the price admission.

Anyway, Richards?s hair doesn?t carry as much weight as Sally?s .357. He may have the ?doo of the century?, but unless it can stop a .357 in full flight, it won?t do much good. At least not in the heat of the moment. It may help in the ratings when the story goes to air, but in an alley?I?d rather have a rabies infected bat to throw at the old girl than just my good looks, but that?s just me.

Anyway, just tryin to help. I know my expertizee has whelmed a few folks. Hope this doesn?t overwhelm you, I?d hate for that to happen?

Your buddy,


Re: Probate Question- JT, Kristine Please Help! - Posted by Kristine-CA

Posted by Kristine-CA on April 10, 2006 at 23:02:18:

Who is Richard? ? ?

I think it depends on your state laws regarding predeased children as
to whether or not Bill’s share belongs to his or children, if any.

If the will says Lisa is to serve as executor, then there is no reason to
go any other route–unless Lisa is deceased or refuses to serve.

Who are you working with here? Kristine

Re: Probate Question- JT, Kristine Please Help! - Posted by John

Posted by John on April 11, 2006 at 16:52:32:

Where have you been lately? I miss the wisdom of you postings here. I like your advise and experiences and do my best to attain a success rate of equal purporations. Hope you post more frequently in the future and if you are in Atlanta look me up and I will be in the bar.

Re: Probate Question- JT, Kristine Please Help! - Posted by IB (NJ)

Posted by IB (NJ) on April 11, 2006 at 24:43:10:

Oops, I meant 'John’not Richard. In any event, I wasn’t sure about Lisa because John did serve at one time.

I was kind of curious as to how ‘most states’ deal with predeceased children.

I’m working with Sally. Thanks.

Re: Probate Question- JT, Kristine Please Help! - Posted by Ted

Posted by Ted on April 11, 2006 at 03:13:39:

All that I know on the subject is this (and it is not much):
In my state, the portion of the estate that goes to a predeceased child then goes to that child’s estate in the manner that the child (or judge) has determined. For example, John gets 50% of mom’s estate but dies first. In his will (or probate), it is determined that each of his two children get 50% of his estate. The two grandchildren (of John’s mom) now get 25% each of grandmother’s estate.

You may be doing some more research to find the new heirs. I hope this is a KILLER deal for you to go to such great lengths. Then again, you probably have no competition and that alone would make the deal much better.