How can we get the funds to pay funeral expenses from the estate? 6 Answers as of June 09, 2011

My brother is the beneficiary of my mother's life insurance policy. He is missing and we have filed a missing persons report with local police. The money is needed to pay funeral expenses only. What can we do to have the money sent directly to the funeral home if we cannot locate him?

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Theodore W. Robinson, P.C.
Theodore W. Robinson, P.C. | Theodore W. Robinson
Not much, I'm afraid. You'll have to start an Administration proceedings in Surrogates court to get a Court Order. Plus don't worry so much about the funeral expenses yet. Just find your brother first and then deal with the expenses. Speak to a local estate attorney about this.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 6/9/2011
Apple Law Firm PLLC
Apple Law Firm PLLC | David Goldman
Unless the insurance policy was for the funeral and stated so in the contract, you have no rights to take his money and use it for funeral expenses. You will probably need a probate attorney and can discuss your options and your specific circumstances with the attorney
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 6/9/2011
The Coyle Law Office
The Coyle Law Office | T. Andrew Coyle
Well, technically, your brother is now the owner of the life insurance proceeds. The insurance company will likely only release the funds to him, his guardian, or his executor. I would communicate the situation to the funeral home - they are generally understanding and used to situations where it may take a little bit of time before they receive payment.
Answer Applies to: Illinois
Replied: 6/9/2011
The Law Office of David L. Leon
The Law Office of David L. Leon | David L. Leon
Unfortunately, the money doesn't belong to the estate, it belongs to the brother. The policy is simply a contract between your mother and the insurance policy to pay money to the beneficiary. The policy may contain language to the effect that if the brother is unavailable, then the funds will go to a second (contingent ) beneficiary.
Answer Applies to: Texas
Replied: 6/8/2011
Ashman Law Office
Ashman Law Office | Glen Edward Ashman
You cannot. It's not the funeral home's money nor yours.
Answer Applies to: Georgia
Replied: 6/8/2011
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