Q; Can an estate administrator defraud a sole beneficiary of an IRA account that mom left her by telling her that monies HAVE to go into the estate account? The beneficiary can prove she’s sole beneficiary of the account and can prove the administrator told her it had to go into estate. Can administrator use the “I didn’t know it didn’t need to go through estate” as a defense? Is ignorance a defense? Or, isn’t that her fiduciary responsibility as administrator to KNOW what accounts are placed in estate or not?
A Yes, she should know. If what you are saying is correct, the Administrator is wrong. I assume the Administrator is hacking her way through an estate without legal representation? If an attorney was representing the Administrator, this wouldn’t have happened. I find it highly unusual that a financial company would pay out a claim to and estate when there was a beneficiary listed on the IRA. You may want to hire an attorney to inquire and/or file a petition for a court accounting.
Q: The former administrator (attorney) of estate asked to resign from a case in 1998 which was permitted. A second attorney was assigned the administrator in 1998 for the deceased, who had no will. There are current funds that are being at the State Treasury for a substantial sum. Can the dead person’s daughter ask probate court to be assigned the administrator?
A: Based on the limited facts given, I am assuming that the estate was closed years ago? If the Department of Revenue will only release the money to the estate, all is not lost. If the estate was closed (which I am not sure it was) it can be opened again through a temporary grant of letters, to another person. If the daughter qualifies to serve as an administrator, she may be able to serve unless she is challenged by another heir for the position and loses the challenge. It is possible that the new proposed administrator will have to petition the court to reopen this estate. You should consult with an attorney so he or she can review the entire situation including the status of the estate to determine if it was administered and closed properly. If this estate was never administered properly, there could be unpaid debt and delinquent taxes owed which may not make it worth the trouble of opening again.