When you agree to be or are appointed as fiduciary of an estate, you’re taking on a lot of responsibilities. Fiduciaries, known as executor or administrator, must locate assets, make an inventory, pay the estate debts and distribute the remaining assets to the heirs and beneficiaries. This can be a long, involved process—but what happens if you find additional assets after the estate is closed?
Ohio law permits estates to be open as long as it takes to notify creditors, pay debts and distribute assets. Depending on the size and complexity of the person’s estate plan, some probate cases remain open for a year or more.
While it can be tempting to rush the probate process, it’s always better to be methodical and careful—including contacting James Bart Leonardi, LLC for assistance when needed. Accountants and financial advisors, estate planning attorneys and other professionals can help you identify and locate assets. By taking your time and conducting a thorough search, you’re less likely to uncover assets after the estate is settled.
Estates are closed after all debts are paid and assets are distributed. However, even the most careful executor may still find assets after the estate is closed. This can happen when items like cash, bonds, stock certificates, deeds, fine jewelry, art and other assets are hidden away with other papers and unassuming property.
Fortunately, you can reopen probate estate. For example, imagine that you found the deed to a parcel of land and $5,000 in cash hidden within a box of books. Our firm can help you file the proper pleadings, then guide you through process of notifying all interested parties, paying out assets, etc.
If you’ve been appointed as an estate fiduciary, James Bart Leonardi, LLC can guide you through the probate process. Call us today to learn more about your options.