How can I legally cash an estate check? 7 Answers as of August 17, 2011

When my father passed 5 years ago there was no Will, and nothing went through a probate court. I was made a tenant on the house he and my mother shared. She passed away a few months after he did. I became sole owner of the home, and sold it months later. I have been issued a check in the estate of his name. How can I legally cash this check?

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The Law Offices of Laurie E. Ohall, P.A.
The Law Offices of Laurie E. Ohall, P.A. | Laurie E. Ohall
Depending on the amount of the check, you will either need to open a summary administration or you can do a disposition without administration.
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 8/17/2011
Ashman Law Office
Ashman Law Office | Glen Edward Ashman
You can't. And from what you said, you didn't own the home so you could be in big trouble. Get a lawyer ASAP. You needed to do a probate and you have made a pile of mistakes that may get you sued. You MAY be able to fix it with a probate.
Answer Applies to: Georgia
Replied: 8/17/2011
Asset Protection and Elder Law Center
Asset Protection and Elder Law Center | Shadi Alai-Shaffer
Unfortunately, you have to open an estate - meaning you have to file and open a probate case which will then allow you to open a bank account in the name of your dad's estate which then you can deposit the check into. It is not a simple process and you do need legal counsel to assist you so I suggest you meeting with an attorney for a consultation.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 8/17/2011
Minor, Bandonis and Haggerty, P.C.
Minor, Bandonis and Haggerty, P.C. | Brian Haggerty
Answering this question requires more information. It should not, strictly speaking, be possible to sell the home and receive proceeds made out to "Estate of Dad" unless you opened probate and could show you were the Administrator of the Estate. Somebody needs to review this in detail and figure out what has happened.
Answer Applies to: Oregon
Replied: 8/17/2011
Goldsmith & Guymon
Goldsmith & Guymon | Dara Goldsmith
You cannot legally cash the check. The question is what can you do with it? The answer depends upon the amount of the check. You probably need to meet with an attorney to address the next steps, as it depends upon the amount of the check, whether you have any siblings, if your father was married, and whether there are any unpaid bills of your father. This response is not intended to create an attorney client relationship. The response is solely intended to answer the question presented. Additional facts and issues are unknown to the responding attorney. Should you still have questions, legal assistance should be sought by making an appointment to meet with an attorney, rather than attempting to resolve the issue via e mail. This response is merely provided to give direction to assist you in the decision of whether you should contact an attorney or not.
Answer Applies to: Nevada
Replied: 8/17/2011
    Burnham & Associates
    Burnham & Associates | Stephanie K. Burnham
    You will need to open a Probate. It is unusual that they would allow you to sell the house without the Probate, but the bank will not cash the check.
    Answer Applies to: New Hampshire
    Replied: 8/17/2011
    Law Offices of Brian Chew
    Law Offices of Brian Chew | Brian Chew
    You would need to goto to the probate court and open a case so that you can be made the executor of the estate. Once you are appointed and obtain a letters testamentary, you can open an estate account. A bank will not let you cash a check made out an an estate.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/17/2011
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