From our “Ask a Question” Mailbag: Formal Accounting Process to Close Estates
Most Recently Updated July 15, 2018.
“I have served as the Executor for my mother’s Delaware County estate for over a year and wish to close the estate, but my brother claims that I have embezzled money from the estate. This is ridiculous, but how can I close the estate while he makes these claims?”
Formal Accounting Process to Close Estates
It is unfortunate that your brother is making these claims, but there is a forum available to you that will allow you to bring the estate to a close.
As the executor, you could make an “at risk” distribution of the estate assets. This means you distribute the money without getting a release. This is not advisable, as your brother could then use his inheritance to hire a Orphans’ Court Lawyer to force you to file a Formal Account. Because you would have distributed the estate funds, this cost would come out of your pocket.
Instead, you have the legal right to retain your own Delaware County Orphans’ Court Attorney to help you assemble and file a Formal Accounting. The costs related to this are a normal cost of an estate and paid out of the estate’s funds.
Your brother is then free to object to your accounting. If you cannot satisfy his objections, you will get a hearing in front of the Delaware County Orphans’ Court judge who renders a decision. Either way, you are then done and released.
For more information, see my website about Closing an Estate.
More Probate Questions?
Filing an accounting is only part of the overall probate process. By all means, if you wish to learn more, please read my more detailed article, The Probate Process All You Need to Know.
In Conclusion: Formal Accounting Process to Close Estates
I hope that this article was helpful in explaining how to close an estate. Further, I included links to even more detailed information on my website. Therefore, please contact me and let me know how I did. Certainly, your comments and questions are welcome!
Let our Probate Lawyers help walk you through what can be a confusing process. To begin with, call to speak to one of our experienced Probate Attorneys. By all means, our lawyers are ready to answer your questions. In fact, feel free to contact our office for a free consultation. Ultimately our goal is to make the process as painless as possible!
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