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California Decedent Estate Practice

Comprehensive, in-depth coverage (including forms) of probate practice and procedures, summary probate proceedings, and transfers outside of probate.

Comprehensive, in-depth coverage (including forms) of probate practice and procedures, summary probate proceedings, and transfers outside of probate.

  • Procedures for transferring assets when formal probate is not required
  • Spouses and registered domestic partners: rights, liabilities, and special transfer procedures
  • Statutory protections for family members
  • Starting probate, including preparing petition, order, bond requirements, and letters
  • Decedent estate administration, including inventory and appraisal, creditors' claims, sales, investments, and accounts
  • Distributions and transfers
  • Problems in estate administration, including will contests, suing to establish entitlement to estate distribution, and challenging representatives in court
  • Compensation
  • Nonresident heirs and beneficiaries
  • Estate tax and income tax concepts and procedures
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Comprehensive, in-depth coverage (including forms) of probate practice and procedures, summary probate proceedings, and transfers outside of probate.

  • Procedures for transferring assets when formal probate is not required
  • Spouses and registered domestic partners: rights, liabilities, and special transfer procedures
  • Statutory protections for family members
  • Starting probate, including preparing petition, order, bond requirements, and letters
  • Decedent estate administration, including inventory and appraisal, creditors' claims, sales, investments, and accounts
  • Distributions and transfers
  • Problems in estate administration, including will contests, suing to establish entitlement to estate distribution, and challenging representatives in court
  • Compensation
  • Nonresident heirs and beneficiaries
  • Estate tax and income tax concepts and procedures

1

Initial Considerations

Mary-Felicia Apanius

  • I.  THE GRIEF PROCESS
    • A.  Introduction  1.1
    • B.  Issues for Attorneys
      • 1.  Awareness of Client’s Grief  1.2
      • 2.  Effect of Grief on Client’s Responses  1.3
      • 3.  Objects or Dates That May Reactivate Grief  1.4
  • II.  POSTMORTEM ARRANGEMENTS
    • A.  Disposition of Remains
      • 1.  Introduction  1.5
      • 2.  Coroner’s Inquest  1.6
      • 3.  Autopsy and Disposition of Body  1.7
      • 4.  Anatomical Gifts Under California’s Revised Uniform Anatomical Gift Act  1.8
        • a.  Making or Refusing to Make Gift Before Donor’s Death  1.9
        • b.  Amending or Revoking Gift Authorized During Life  1.10
        • c.  Third Party’s Postdeath Actions
          • (1)  Third Party’s Authority When No Instructions by Donor  1.11
          • (2)  Limitations on Third Party’s Authority to Authorize Gift  1.12
          • (3)  Revocation of Postdeath Gift  1.13
        • d.  Responsibility for Locating Documentation of Gift or Refusal to Make Gift  1.14
        • e.  Actions by Doctor, Hospital, and Organ Procurement Agency  1.15
        • f.  Issues Regarding the Misuse of Organs or Parts  1.15A
      • 5.  Funeral Arrangements
        • a.  Decedent’s Instructions  1.16
        • b.  Funeral Contracts  1.17
        • c.  Settling Disputes  1.18
        • d.  Duties of Person With Right of Control  1.19
        • e.  Fraternal or Military Funerals  1.20
    • B.  Certified Copies of Death Certificate  1.21
    • C.  U.S. Citizen’s Death Abroad  1.22
  • III.  LEGAL FRAMEWORK FOR DECEDENTS’ ESTATES
    • A.  Law Governing Court and Informal Actions  1.23
    • B.  Procedural Aspects of Probate Court Proceedings
      • 1.  Forms
        • a.  Judicial Council Forms  1.24
        • b.  Printed Court Forms  1.25
        • c.  Electronic Filing  1.25A
        • d.  Attorney-Drafted Forms; Format Rules  1.26
        • e.  Verification of Petitions
          • (1)  Requirement; Significance  1.27
          • (2)  Form: Verification by Declaration  1.28
        • f.  Exhibits and Attachments  1.29
        • g.  Proposed Orders  1.29A
      • 2.  Hearing Practices  1.30
  • IV.  FIRST STEPS  1.31
    • A.  Determining Whether Decedent Died Testate or Intestate  1.32
      • 1.  Locating Will  1.33
        • a.  Decedent’s Safe Deposit Box  1.34
        • b.  Joint Safe Deposit Box  1.35
        • c.  International Will Registry  1.36
      • 2.  If Decedent Died With Will  1.37
    • B.  When Reporting Fact of Death Is Required  1.38
    • C.  Determining Appropriate Procedures and Proceedings  1.39
      • 1.  Characterization of Property  1.40
      • 2.  How Title Is Held  1.41
      • 3.  Value of Assets  1.42
  • V.  OFFICE PROCEDURES AND CASE MANAGEMENT
    • A.  In General  1.43
    • B.  Probate Proceedings  1.44
      • 1.  Calendars  1.45
      • 2.  Maintenance of Records  1.46
    • C.  Checklist: Estate Record  1.47
    • D.  Closing Files; Disposing of Inactive Files  1.48

2

Nonprobate Transfers

Nancy Baldwin Reimann

Amy L. McEvoy

Lauren C. Liebes

  • I.  INTRODUCTION  2.1
  • II.  REAL PROPERTY
    • A.  Joint Tenancy  2.2
      • 1.  Effect of Death on Title  2.3
      • 2.  Confirmation of Joint Tenancy Ownership  2.4
        • a.  Was There Prior Severance?  2.5
          • (1)  Severance by Less Than All Joint Tenants Must Be Recorded  2.6
          • (2)  Exceptions to Recording Requirement  2.7
          • (3)  Automatic Severance if Joint Tenant Is Killed by Other Joint Tenant  2.8
          • (4)  Severance Involving Former Spouses or Registered Domestic Partners  2.9
          • (5)  Judgment Lien and Levy Do Not Sever, But Execution Sale Does  2.10
          • (6)  Bankruptcy  2.11
        • b.  What to Do if There Are Doubts About Title  2.12
      • 3.  Transfer of Record Title to Surviving Joint Tenant  2.13
        • a.  Affidavit Procedure  2.14
          • (1)  Requirements  2.15
          • (2)  Form: Affidavit—Death of Joint Tenant  2.16
        • b.  Court Proceeding to Establish Fact of Death Under Prob C §200  2.17
          • (1)  Who May Petition  2.18
          • (2)  Where and When to File  2.19
          • (3)  Contents of Petition  2.20
          • (4)  Form: Petition to Establish Fact of Death of Joint Tenant  2.21
          • (5)  Notice, Hearing, and Order  2.22
          • (6)  Form: Order Establishing Fact of Death  2.23
        • c.  Proceedings to Establish Record of Death Under Health & S C §103450  2.24
          • (1)  Petition  2.25
          • (2)  Hearing  2.26
          • (3)  Order  2.27
        • d.  Effect of Recording Document Establishing Fact of Death  2.28
        • e.  Attorney Fees  2.29
      • 4.  Mortgage Insurance  2.30
      • 5.  Rights of Decedent’s Creditors
        • a.  Lien Without Execution Generally Insufficient  2.31
        • b.  If Creation of Joint Tenancy in Fraud of Creditors  2.32
    • B.  Life Estate  2.33
      • 1.  Clearing Title  2.34
      • 2.  Rights of Deceased Life Tenant’s Creditors  2.35
    • C.  Revocable Transfer on Death Deed   2.35A
      • 1.  Execution of a Transfer on Death Deed  2.35B
      • 2.  Form: Simple Revocable Transfer on Death (TOD) Deed  2.35C
      • 3.  Transfer of Record Title to Beneficiary on Death of Transferor  2.35D
      • 4.  Rights of Third Parties And Decedent’s Creditors  2.35E
      • 5.  Contesting the Validity of a Transfer of Property by Revocable TOD Deed  2.35F
      • 6.  Revocation of Revocable Transfer on Death (TOD) Deed  2.35G
      • 7.  Form: Revocation of Revocable Transfer on Death (TOD) Deed  2.35H
    • D.  Real Property Security   2.36
  • III.  PERSONAL PROPERTY
    • A.  General Considerations
      • 1.  Joint Tenancy Assets  2.37
      • 2.  Probate Code §5000 Assets
        • a.  Types of Instruments and Accounts Covered  2.38
        • b.  Nonprobate Transfer Must Satisfy Terms of Instrument  2.39
        • c.  Protection of Holder of Transferred Property  2.40
        • d.  Nonprobate Transfers of Community Property  2.41
        • e.  Procedure  2.42
        • f.  Rights of Decedent’s Creditors  2.43
        • g.  Personal Property Security  2.44
      • 3.  Attorney Fees  2.45
    • B.  Multiple-Party Accounts  2.46
      • 1.  Joint Account  2.47
      • 2.  Pay on Death (POD) Account  2.48
      • 3.  Totten Trust Account  2.49
      • 4.  Joint Account With Former Spouse or Former Registered Domestic Partner  2.50
      • 5.  Special Treatment of Community Property Multiple-Party Account  2.51
      • 6.  Transferring Multiple-Party Accounts  2.52
      • 7.  Liability of Financial Institution  2.53
      • 8.  Actions to Determine Title  2.54
    • C.  Vehicles and Vessels Registered With DMV  2.55
      • 1.  Vehicle or Vessel in Decedent’s Name Alone  2.56
      • 2.  Joint Tenancy
        • a.  Form of Registration  2.57
        • b.  Transfer at Death  2.58
      • 3.  “Transfer on Death” Registration  2.59
    • D.  Life Insurance
      • 1.  Determine Benefits Payable  2.60
      • 2.  Determine Owner and Beneficiary of Each Policy  2.61
        • a.  Review Changes of Beneficiary  2.62
        • b.  If Decedent Is Survived by Spouse or Former Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner or Former Registered Domestic Partner  2.63
      • 3.  Procedure for Collecting Benefits  2.64
      • 4.  Rights of Decedent’s Creditors  2.65
    • E.  Decedent’s Retirement and Other Employee Benefit Plans
      • 1.  Identify Decedent’s Retirement and Other Benefit Plans  2.66
      • 2.  Determine Beneficiaries of Each Plan  2.67
      • 3.  Procedure to Obtain Benefits  2.68
      • 4.  Rights of Decedent’s Creditors
        • a.  Public Retirement Benefits Under California Law  2.69
        • b.  Private Retirement Benefits Under California Law  2.70
        • c.  Qualified Plan Prohibition Against Assignment and Alienation  2.71
    • F.  Securities Registered Under Uniform TOD Security Registration Act (Prob C §§5500–5512)  2.72
      • 1.  Definitions  2.73
      • 2.  Registration  2.74
      • 3.  Transfer on Death  2.75
    • G.  Annuities  2.76
    • H.  United States Bills, Notes, and Savings Bonds
      • 1.  Treasury Bills and Notes  2.77
      • 2.  Bonds  2.78
        • a.  Permissible Forms of Registration  2.79
        • b.  Reissuance or Redemption  2.80
        • c.  Redemption Value; Reissuance Date  2.81
        • d.  Rights of Decedent’s Creditors  2.82
    • I.  Partnership Interests  2.83
  • IV.  TRUST PROPERTY  2.84
    • A.  Coordination of Trust Instrument and Will  2.85
    • B.  Creditors’ Claims
      • 1.  Rights of Decedent Settlor’s Creditors  2.86
      • 2.  Optional Use of Trust Claims Procedure  2.87
      • 3.  Rights of Trust Beneficiaries’ Creditors  2.88
  • V.  SURVIVORS’ BENEFITS UNDER PUBLIC BENEFITS PROGRAMS
    • A.  Workers’ Compensation Benefits  2.89
    • B.  Social Security Benefits  2.90
      • 1.  Creditors’ Rights  2.91
      • 2.  One-Time Lump-Sum Death Payment  2.92
      • 3.  Monthly Social Security Survivors’ Benefits  2.93
      • 4.  Procedure for Collecting Benefits  2.94
  • VI.  PROPERTY HELD BY DECEDENT AS FIDUCIARY
    • A.  Preliminary Considerations  2.95
    • B.  Decedent Trustee
      • 1.  Appointment of Successor Trustee  2.96
      • 2.  Accounting on Death of Trustee  2.97
    • C.  Decedent Custodian
      • 1.  Appointment of Successor Custodian  2.98
      • 2.  Accounting on Death of Custodian  2.99
    • D.  Decedent Conservator or Guardian  2.100

3

Transfer of Personal and Real Property in Small Estates

Patina A. Madison

  • I.  SMALL ESTATE SUMMARY PROCEDURES
    • A.  Purpose  3.1
    • B.  General Description of Available Procedures  3.2
    • C.  Common Elements
      • 1.  Definition of Decedent’s Estate  3.3
      • 2.  Valuation Limits  3.4
      • 3.  Assets Excluded From Valuation Limits  3.5
      • 4.  Who May Use Procedures  3.6
      • 5.  Attorney Fees  3.7
    • D.  Deciding Whether to Use Summary Procedure  3.8
      • 1.  Possible Disagreement Among Decedent’s Successors in Interest  3.9
      • 2.  Decedent’s Liabilities  3.10
  • II.  COLLECTING SMALL ESTATE PERSONAL PROPERTY UNDER PROB C §§13100–13116  3.11
    • A.  Determining Value of Estate  3.12
    • B.  Use of Procedure by Surviving Spouse  3.13
    • C.  Other Uses of Affidavit Procedure
      • 1.  Claimed Property in Probate of Another Decedent  3.14
      • 2.  Money or Property Subject to Pending Action or Proceeding  3.15
    • D.  When Successor May Collect  3.16
    • E.  Coordination With Probate Administration  3.17
    • F.  What Must Be Presented
      • 1.  Affidavit or Declaration  3.18
      • 2.  Form: Declaration Under Probate Code §§13100–13116  3.19
      • 3.  Supporting Documents and Proof of Identity  3.20
        • a.  Evidence of Decedent’s Ownership of Property; Bond or Indemnity Agreement  3.21
        • b.  Proof of Identity of Claimants to Estate  3.22
          • (1)  Requirements if Affidavit or Declaration Not Notarized and Holder Does Not Personally Know Claimant  3.23
          • (2)  Special Requirements for Certain Holders  3.24
    • G.  Completing Transfer  3.25
      • 1.  Transfers of Debts Secured by Real Property: Recording Requirement  3.26
      • 2.  Noncompliance by Holder  3.27
      • 3.  Holder’s Response to Conflicting Affidavits  3.28
    • H.  Liability Issues
      • 1.  Liability of Holder of Property for Transferring Property  3.29
      • 2.  Liability of Person to Whom Payment, Delivery, or Transfer Is Made  3.30
        • a.  Liability for Decedent’s Unsecured Debts  3.31
        • b.  Liability to Person With Superior Right  3.32
        • c.  Restitution if There Are Probate Proceedings
          • (1)  Extent of Liability of Successor in Interest  3.33
          • (2)  Who May Bring Action  3.34
  • III.  REAL PROPERTY TRANSFERS IN SMALL ESTATES  3.35
    • A.  Comparison of the Two Procedures  3.36
    • B.  Transferring Real Property by Court Order Under Prob C §§13150–13158  3.37
      • 1.  Preparing Petition  3.38
        • a.  Interested Persons  3.39
        • b.  Required Attachments  3.40
      • 2.  Form: Petition to Determine Succession to Real Property (Estates of $150,000 or Less) (Judicial Council Form DE-310)  3.41
      • 3.  Where to File  3.42
      • 4.  Setting Hearing Date; Notice, Hearing, and Order  3.43
      • 5.  Form: Order Determining Succession to Real Property (Estates of $150,000 or Less) (Judicial Council Form DE-315)  3.44
      • 6.  Recording Order and Submitting PCOR to Assessor  3.45
      • 7.  Attorney Fees  3.46
      • 8.  Liability for Decedent’s Unsecured Debts  3.47
    • C.  Transferring Real Property by Affidavit Under Prob C §§13200–13210  3.48
      • 1.  Preparing Affidavit  3.49
      • 2.  Form: Affidavit re Real Property of Small Value ($50,000 or Less) (Judicial Council Form DE-305)  3.50
      • 3.  Required Attachments  3.51
      • 4.  Filing Affidavit, Obtaining Certified Copy, and Giving Notice  3.52
      • 5.  Recording Affidavit and Submitting PCOR to Assessor  3.53
      • 6.  Liability Issues
        • a.  Liability for Decedent’s Unsecured Debts and to Holder of Superior Right  3.54
        • b.  Restitution if There Are Probate Proceedings  3.55
    • D.  Property Tax Consequences of Transfers of Real Property  3.56

4

Spouses and Registered Domestic Partners: Rights, Liabilities, and Special Transfer Procedures

Michael C. Gerson

  • I.  INTRODUCTION  4.1
  • II.  INITIAL CONSIDERATIONS
    • A.  Definitions
      • 1.  Surviving Spouse and Registered Domestic Partner  4.2
      • 2.  Community Property  4.3
      • 3.  Quasi-Community Property  4.4
      • 4.  Community Property With Right of Survivorship  4.5
      • 5.  Separate Property  4.6
      • 6.  Joint Tenancy Property  4.7
    • B.  Characterization of Property
      • 1.  How It Is Determined  4.8
      • 2.  Transmutation  4.9
        • a.  Pre-1985  4.10
        • b.  Post-1984  4.11
          • (1)  Writing Required  4.12
          • (2)  Extrinsic Evidence Not Admissible  4.13
    • C.  Ownership Interests at Death  4.14
      • 1.  Division of Community Property Assets  4.15
        • a.  Division by Agreement  4.16
        • b.  Nonprorata Division of Aggregate Value  4.17
      • 2.  Community Property Held in Conservatorship Estate  4.18
    • D.  General Rules Governing Liability for Debts
      • 1.  Under Family Code
        • a.  Liability of Community Property  4.19
        • b.  Liability of Spouses or Domestic Partners and Property to Creditors  4.20
        • c.  Limit of Liability of Community Property  4.21
      • 2.  Under Probate Code
        • a.  Allocation of Debts Between Separate and Community Property on Death or Dissolution  4.22
        • b.  Example of Allocation  4.23
        • c.  Chart: Allocation of Debts Under Prob C §11444  4.24
        • d.  Apportionment by Agreement  4.25
  • III.  NONPROBATE TRANSFERS UNDER PROB C §§5000–5032 AND 5040–5048
    • A.  Nonprobate Transfers of Community Property When Surviving Spouse or Surviving Domestic Partner Not Recipient
      • 1.  Nature of Problem  4.26
      • 2.  Nonprobate Transfers of Community Property
        • a.  With Consent  4.27
        • b.  Consent Is Revocable  4.28
        • c.  If No Consent to Transfer  4.29
      • 3.  Right to Recover Gifts of Community Property  4.30
      • 4.  Right to Recover Gifts of Quasi-Community Property  4.31
      • 5.  Right to Recover Benefits Payable at Death  4.32
      • 6.  Qualified Pension Plans and Other Federal Benefits: Preemption  4.33
      • 7.  Joint Tenancy  4.34
    • B.  Nonprobate Transfers to Former Spouse or Former Registered Domestic Partner
      • 1.  Failure of Transfer by Will  4.35
      • 2.  Failure of Nonprobate Transfer to Former Spouse or Former Registered Domestic Partner  4.36
        • a.  When Nonprobate Transfers Fail  4.37
        • b.  What Is “Nonprobate Transfer”  4.38
      • 3.  Joint Tenancy and Community Property With Right of Survivorship  4.39
  • IV.  PASSAGE OF PROPERTY TO SURVIVING SPOUSE OR REGISTERED DOMESTIC PARTNER WITHOUT ADMINISTRATION (PROB C §§13500–13660)  4.40
    • A.  General Provisions
      • 1.  When Administration May Be Required  4.41
      • 2.  When Administration May Be Elected  4.42
        • a.  Practical Considerations  4.43
        • b.  Survivor’s Election to Administer Property
          • (1)  Election to Administer Decedent’s Property  4.44
          • (2)  Election to Administer Survivor’s Community and Quasi-Community Interest in Property  4.45
          • (3)  Making Prob C §13502 Election  4.46
          • (4)  Form: Election by Surviving Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner to Administer Survivor’s Community Property in Deceased Spouse’s or Partner’s Estate  4.47
        • c.  Administration of Pecuniary Devise or Fractional Interest  4.48
      • 3.  Election and Agreement to Transfer Property to Trustee Outside of Administration  4.49
        • a.  Making Election  4.50
        • b.  Relation to Election Under Prob C §13502  4.51
        • c.  Form: Election and Agreement by Surviving Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner to Transfer Community Property to Trustee  4.52
    • B.  Right to Dispose of Community and Quasi-Community Property
      • 1.  Real Property  4.53
      • 2.  Securities Registered Solely in Name of Surviving Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner  4.54
    • C.  Collection by Affidavit or Declaration of Decedent’s Earnings  4.55
      • 1.  Presenting Affidavit or Declaration  4.56
      • 2.  Consequences of Using Procedure  4.57
      • 3.  Form: Declaration to Collect Compensation Owed to Deceased Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner (Prob C §§13600–13606)  4.58
    • D.  Spousal or Domestic Partner Property Petition
      • 1.  When Prob C §13650 Petition Might Be Recommended  4.59
      • 2.  Filing Petition  4.60
      • 3.  Contents of Petition  4.61
      • 4.  Form: Spousal or Domestic Partner Property Petition (Judicial Council Form DE-221)  4.62
      • 5.  Notice  4.63
      • 6.  Protection of Decedent’s Business Creditors; When Inventory and Appraisal Required  4.64
      • 7.  Order  4.65
      • 8.  Form: Spousal or Domestic Partner Property Order (Judicial Council Form DE-226)  4.66
      • 9.  Attorney Fees  4.67
    • E.  Survivor’s Liability  4.68
      • 1.  Liability for Decedent’s Debts (Prob C §§13550–13554)  4.69
        • a.  Exceptions to Liability
          • (1)  Funeral Expenses and Expenses of Last Illness  4.70
          • (2)  If Election Is Made to Probate Both Halves of Community and Quasi-Community Property  4.71
        • b.  Enforcement of Liability  4.72
        • c.  Allocation of Debt  4.73
      • 2.  Liability for Decedent’s Property (Prob C §§13561–13563)
        • a.  Liability to Person With Superior Right Under Decedent’s Will  4.74
        • b.  Limits of Survivor’s Aggregate Personal Liability  4.75
        • c.  Liability to Estate if Probate Proceedings Are Commenced  4.76
          • (1)  If Survivor Did Not Make Significant Improvement  4.77
          • (2)  If Survivor Made Significant Improvement  4.78
  • V.  SETTING ASIDE ESTATES NOT EXCEEDING $20,000 (PROB C §§6600–6615)
    • A.  Statutory Authority for Set-Aside  4.79
      • 1.  Persons to Whom Estate May Be Set Aside  4.80
      • 2.  Exclusions in Determining Net Value of Decedent’s Estate  4.81
      • 3.  When to Use Prob C §§6600–6615  4.82
    • B.  Procedure
      • 1.  Who May Petition; Venue  4.83
      • 2.  When Petition May Be Filed  4.84
        • a.  Contents of Petition  4.85
        • b.  Form: Petition to Set Aside and Assign Estate  4.86
      • 3.  Inventory and Appraisal  4.87
      • 4.  Notice and Hearing  4.88
      • 5.  Factors Court Must Consider in Making Order  4.89
      • 6.  Assignment of Estate as Part of Order  4.90
      • 7.  Form: Order Setting Aside Estate and Assigning Estate  4.91
      • 8.  Effect of Order  4.92
      • 9.  Liability of Recipients  4.93
      • 10.  Attorney Fees  4.94

5

Jurisdiction and Venue

Adam L. Streltzer

  • I.  JURISDICTION
    • A.  Aspects of Probate Court Jurisdiction  5.1
      • 1.  Jurisdictional Facts  5.2
      • 2.  Subject Matter Jurisdiction  5.3
      • 3.  Constitutional Due Process Requirements; Relation to In Rem Nature of Probate Proceedings  5.4
    • B.  Probate Court as Court of General Jurisdiction  5.5
      • 1.  Continuing Jurisdiction  5.6
      • 2.  Incidental Powers  5.7
      • 3.  Contempt Powers  5.7A
    • C.  Exclusive or Concurrent Probate Court Jurisdiction  5.8
    • D.  Relation to Federal Jurisdiction
      • 1.  The “Probate Exception”  5.9
      • 2.  Application as to Trusts  5.9A
    • E.  Conclusiveness of Probate Court Order Finding Jurisdiction  5.10
      • 1.  Nonfundamental Jurisdiction: Not Subject to Collateral Attack
        • a.  Nonfundamental Jurisdictional Facts  5.11
        • b.  Actions in Excess of Jurisdiction or on Improper Notice by Court With Fundamental Jurisdiction  5.12
      • 2.  Lack of Fundamental Jurisdiction: Subject to Collateral Attack
        • a.  Extrinsic Fraud or Erroneous Determination of Decedent’s Death  5.13
        • b.  Lack of Subject Matter Jurisdiction; Failure to Comply With Constitutional Due Process Requirements  5.14
      • 3.  Unusual Circumstances May Allow Collateral Attack  5.15
  • II.  VENUE  5.16
    • A.  Branch Courts  5.17
    • B.  Domiciliary and Nondomiciliary Decedents  5.18
    • C.  Conflicts Between California Courts  5.19
    • D.  Transfer and Disqualification  5.20
    • E.  Finality of Court Adjudication of Venue  5.21

6

Notice

Linda Eshoe

Justin Gold

Eric R. Yamamoto

  • I.  INTRODUCTION
    • A.  Purpose of Notice Requirements  6.1
    • B.  Constitutional and Jurisdictional Notice Requirements  6.2
    • C.  Notice Requirements in Local Rules  6.3
    • D.  Other Basic Concepts Regarding Notice  6.4
    • E.  Summary of Methods of Notice  6.5
  • II.  NOTICE REQUIREMENTS
    • A.  Methods of Notice
      • 1.  Basic Notice Provision: Prob C §1220  6.6
        • a.  Mailing
          • (1)  To Whom Notice Must Be Delivered  6.7
          • (2)  Time for Giving Notice  6.8
          • (3)  Manner of Mailing  6.9
          • (4)  Unknown Address of Person Entitled to Notice  6.10
          • (5)  Form: Notice of Hearing—Decedent’s Estate or Trust (Probate—Decedents’ Estates) (Judicial Council Form DE-120)  6.11
          • (6)  Proof of Mailing  6.12
        • b.  Personal Delivery
          • (1)  Requirements  6.13
          • (2)  Form: Proof of Personal Service of Notice of Hearing—Decedent’s Estate or Trust (Judicial Council Form DE-120(P))  6.14
      • 2.  Fax Transmission  6.14A
      • 3.  Electronic Service  6.14B
      • 4.  Publication
        • a.  Requirements  6.15
        • b.  Chart: Notice by Publication  6.16
        • c.  Form: Memorandum to Newspaper for Publication  6.17
      • 5.  Posting  6.18
      • 6.  Personal Service
        • a.  Proceedings in Which Personal Service Required Under Probate Code  6.19
          • (1)  When Citation Required or Authorized  6.20
          • (2)  When Personal Delivery or Mail and Acknowledgment of Receipt Required or Authorized  6.21
        • b.  Timing of Notice  6.22
        • c.  Manner of Personal Service  6.23
        • d.  Proof of Personal Service  6.24
          • (1)  Form: Summons (Probate) (Judicial Council Form DE-125)  6.25
          • (2)  Form: Citation—Probate (Judicial Council Form DE-122/GC-322)  6.26
          • (3)  Form: Notice and Acknowledgment of Receipt—Civil (Judicial Council Form POS-015)  6.27
        • e.  Personal Service Outside California  6.28
        • f.  When Personal Service Is Deemed Complete  6.29
      • 7.  Other Notice Considerations
        • a.  Notice to the California Attorney General  6.29A
        • b.  Foreign Officials  6.29B
    • B.  Request for Special Notice
      • 1.  Who May Request Special Notice  6.30
      • 2.  Matters for Which Special Notice May Be Requested  6.31
      • 3.  Preparation, Filing, and Service of Judicial Council Form  6.32
      • 4.  Form: Request for Special Notice (Judicial Council Form DE-154, GC-035)  6.33
      • 5.  Effect of Request  6.34
      • 6.  Ex Parte Applications  6.35
      • 7.  Waiver of Special Notice; Modification or Withdrawal of Request  6.36
      • 8.  Form: Waiver of Special Notice  6.37
      • 9.  Form: Withdrawal of Request for Special Notice  6.38
      • 10.  Failure to Give Special Notice  6.39
    • C.  Requirements for Notice of Amended and Supplemental Pleadings  6.40
    • D.  Court’s Latitude in Notice Requirements
      • 1.  Authority to Shorten or Lengthen Time or to Expand or Modify Number of Required Recipients  6.41
        • a.  Form: Application for Order Shortening Time  6.42
        • b.  Form: Order Prescribing Notice (Probate) (Judicial Council Form DE-200/GC-022)  6.43
        • c.  Form: Order Shortening Time  6.44
      • 2.  Authority to Dispense With Notice  6.45
    • E.  Waiver of Notice
      • 1.  When and How to Obtain  6.46
      • 2.  Form: Waiver of Notice  6.47
  • III.  CHART: STATUTORY NOTICES  6.48

7

Petition for Probate, Letters, and Qualification

David A. Levin

Marc Wahrhaftig

  • I.  FUNCTION OF PROBATE ADMINISTRATION  7.1
  • II.  SOURCES OF AUTHORITY AND USE OF JUDICIAL COUNCIL FORMS  7.2
  • III.  PRELIMINARY CONSIDERATIONS
    • A.  Importance of Becoming Familiar With Local Hearing Practices  7.3
    • B.  Locating, Copying, and Filing Will
      • 1.  Locating and Filing Will  7.4
      • 2.  Copies  7.5
    • C.  Probating Missing Person’s Estate  7.6
    • D.  U.S. Citizen’s Death Abroad  7.7
    • E.  Determining Petitioner and Proposed Personal Representative  7.8
      • 1.  Eligibility to Serve as Personal Representative  7.9
      • 2.  Testate Decedent
        • a.  Executor: Named or Designated  7.10
          • (1)  Persons Not Entitled to Serve as Executor  7.11
          • (2)  Proposed Executor Unable or Unwilling to Serve  7.12
        • b.  Administrator With Will Annexed  7.13
      • 3.  Intestate Decedent: Administrator
        • a.  Statutory Requirements  7.14
        • b.  Priority of Persons Entitled to Letters of Administration  7.15
        • c.  Limitation to Order of Priority
          • (1)  Surviving Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner, or Relatives  7.16
          • (2)  Nominee of Person Entitled to Appointment  7.17
          • (3)  Minor, Conservatee, Conservator, or Guardian  7.18
      • 4.  Nonresident Representative  7.19
    • F.  Determining Domicile or Location of Estate of Decedent
      • 1.  Statutory Requirements  7.20
      • 2.  California Domiciliary Decedent  7.21
      • 3.  Nondomiciliary Decedent  7.22
    • G.  Ascertaining Heirs and Beneficiaries
      • 1.  Identifying Heirs and Beneficiaries  7.23
      • 2.  Locating Heirs and Beneficiaries  7.24
    • H.  Determining Whether Surviving Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner Has Waived Rights  7.25
    • I.  Deciding Whether to Request Authority to Act Under Independent Administration of Estates Act  7.26
  • IV.  SPECIAL ADMINISTRATOR
    • A.  Purpose and Grounds for Appointment of Special Administrator  7.27
      • 1.  Form: Grounds for Appointment  7.28
      • 2.  Who May Be Appointed; When Appointment May Be Made  7.29
      • 3.  Powers, Duties, and Obligations  7.30
        • a.  Limited Powers  7.31
        • b.  General Powers  7.32
    • B.  Procedure
      • 1.  Petition for Letters of Special Administration  7.33
      • 2.  Bond  7.34
      • 3.  Filing Fee  7.35
      • 4.  Notice  7.36
      • 5.  Form: Notice  7.37
      • 6.  Ascertaining Local Notice and Hearing Practices  7.38
      • 7.  Order  7.39
      • 8.  Letters  7.40
      • 9.  Subsequent Grant of General Powers
        • a.  Requirements  7.41
        • b.  Form: Petition for General Powers to Special Administrator  7.42
        • c.  Form: Order Granting General Powers to Special Administrator  7.43
    • C.  Duration and Accounting  7.44
    • D.  Compensation  7.45
  • V.  PETITIONING FOR PROBATE
    • A.  Procedural Checklist: Initiating Probate Proceeding  7.46
    • B.  Petition and Attachments  7.47
      • 1.  Checklist: Most Common Errors in Petition for Probate  7.48
      • 2.  Form: Petition for Probate (Probate—Decedents Estates) (Judicial Council Form DE-111)  7.49
        • a.  Heading and Caption  7.50
        • b.  Publication (Item 1)  7.51
        • c.  Petitioner (Items 2a, 2b, 3g, and 3h)  7.52
        • d.  Form: Conditional Declination to Serve  7.53
        • e.  Authority to Administer Under Independent Administration of Estates Act (Caption, Items 2c and 4)  7.54
        • f.  Bond (Items 2d and 3e)  7.55
        • g.  Jurisdictional Facts (Items 3a, 3b, and 3c)  7.56
        • h.  Character, Estimated Value, and Income of Property (Item 3d)  7.57
        • i.  Proof of Intestacy, Proving Will or Lost Will (Item 3f)  7.58
          • (1)  When Will Is Self-Proving or Not Self-Proving  7.59
          • (2)  Form: Proof of Subscribing Witness (Judicial Council Form DE-131)  7.60
          • (3)  Proof of Holographic Will  7.61
          • (4)  Form: Proof of Holographic Instrument (Judicial Council Form DE-135)  7.62
          • (5)  Proving Foreign Language Will  7.63
          • (6)  Form: Certification of Translation of Foreign Language Will (Attachment 3f(2)–3)  7.64
          • (7)  Proving Will of Nondomiciliary Decedent  7.65
          • (8)  Proving Lost or Destroyed Will  7.66
        • j.  Nomination of Personal Representative (Item 3g)  7.67
        • k.  Names, Ages, and Residences of Heirs and Devisees (Items 5–8)  7.68
          • (1)  If Status of Person as Heir or Beneficiary Is in Doubt  7.69
          • (2)  If No Spouse or Issue Survived Decedent (Item 7)  7.70
          • (3)  Predeceased and Postdeceased Beneficiaries or Heirs (Item 8)  7.71
          • (4)  Trust and Class Members as Beneficiaries or Heirs; All Persons Listed (Item 8)  7.72
        • l.  Signature and Verification  7.73
    • C.  Duties and Liabilities  7.74
      • 1.  Form: Duties and Liabilities of Personal Representative and Acknowledgment of Receipt (Judicial Council Form DE-147)  7.75
      • 2.  Form: Confidential Supplement to Duties and Liabilities of Personal Representative (Judicial Council Form DE-147S)  7.76
    • D.  Filing Fee  7.77
    • E.  Notice
      • 1.  Notice by Mail or by Personal Delivery  7.78
        • a.  Heirs and Devisees  7.79
        • b.  Notice When Address Unknown  7.80
        • c.  Notice if Beneficiary Is Deceased  7.81
        • d.  Form: Notice of Petition to Administer Estate (Judicial Council Form DE-121)  7.82
        • e.  Proof of Service  7.83
        • f.  Copies of Petition and Will  7.84
        • g.  Attorney Letter to Accompany Notice  7.85
        • h.  Form: Sample Information Letter to Beneficiary  7.86
      • 2.  Publication of Notice of Petition to Administer Estate  7.87
        • a.  Definitions  7.88
        • b.  Publication as Jurisdictional Prerequisite  7.89
        • c.  Publication as Alert to Creditors  7.90
    • F.  Objections to Appointment of Personal Representative  7.91
    • G.  Hearing
      • 1.  Setting Hearing Date  7.92
      • 2.  Hearing Procedure  7.93
    • H.  Order
      • 1.  Preparing Judicial Council Form  7.94
      • 2.  Form: Order for Probate (Judicial Council Form DE-140)  7.95
    • I.  Letters
      • 1.  Preparing Judicial Council Form  7.96
      • 2.  Form: Letters (Judicial Council Form DE-150)  7.97
  • VI.  AMENDED PLEADINGS, AMENDMENTS, AND SUPPLEMENTS  7.98
    • A.  Supplement Title of Proceedings  7.99
    • B.  Form: Petition for Order to Supplement Title of Proceedings  7.100
    • C.  Form: Order Supplementing Title of Proceedings  7.101
  • VII.  SUCCESSOR REPRESENTATIVE PROCEEDINGS
    • A.  When Necessary; Appointment  7.102
    • B.  Form: Attachment 3g(1)(d) to Petition for Probate on Death or Disqualification of Executor  7.103
    • C.  Issuance of Amended Letters to Co-Representatives  7.104
  • VIII.  TABLE OF CONSANGUINITY; CHART OF RELATIONSHIPS  7.105

8

Determination of Order of Death and Proceeding to Determine Survival

Genevieve S. Orta

Melinda MacDonald Osterloh

  • I.  IMPORTANCE OF DETERMINING ORDER OF DEATHS  8.1
    • A.  Consequences of Characterization of Marital Property  8.2
    • B.  Effect on Creditors’ Claims  8.3
  • II.  WHEN PROVISIONS OF PROB C §§220–234 DO NOT APPLY
    • A.  If Clear and Convincing Evidence of Order of Death  8.4
      • 1.  Nonmedical Witnesses  8.5
      • 2.  Medical Testimony  8.6
      • 3.  Use of Death Certificate  8.7
    • B.  If Document Contains Specific Provisions Regarding Simultaneous Death or Requirements for Survival  8.8
    • C.  If Other Statutes Apply That Contain Their Own Provisions When Insufficient Evidence of Survival  8.9
      • 1.  Community and Quasi-Community Property  8.10
      • 2.  Statutory Will; Intestate Succession  8.11
  • III.  WHEN PROVISIONS OF PROB C §§220–234 APPLY
    • A.  General Rules  8.12
    • B.  Specific Situations
      • 1.  Right to Succeed to Interest in Property Conditional on Survival  8.13
      • 2.  Joint Tenancy Property  8.14
      • 3.  Life or Accident Insurance  8.15
  • IV.  PROCEEDING TO DETERMINE SURVIVAL
    • A.  Situations When Proceeding May Be Used  8.16
    • B.  Application of Antilapse Statute  8.17
    • C.  Alternate Proceedings  8.18
    • D.  Procedure
      • 1.  Petition
        • a.  Who May Petition; Where to File  8.19
        • b.  Contents of Petition  8.20
        • c.  Form: Petition to Determine Survival  8.21
      • 2.  Notice of Hearing  8.22
      • 3.  Objections to Petition
        • a.  In General  8.23
        • b.  Form: Objections to Petition  8.24
      • 4.  Hearing  8.25
      • 5.  Order  8.25A
      • 6.  Form: Order  8.26
    • E.  Awarding Costs; Right to Appeal  8.27

9

Bonds

Eric R. Yamamoto

Stefanie S. Cutler

  • I.  STATUTORY AUTHORITY  9.1
  • II.  PURPOSE OF REPRESENTATIVE’S BOND  9.2
  • III.  DETERMINING WHETHER BOND IS REQUIRED
    • A.  When Bond Is or May Be Required  9.3
    • B.  When Bond Might Not Be Needed or Required  9.4
    • C.  Form: Waiver of Bond By Heir or Beneficiary (Probate—Decedents Estates) (Judicial Council Form DE-142/DE-111(A-3e))  9.4A
  • IV.  ALTERNATIVES TO BOND  9.5
    • A.  Blocked Account
      • 1.  Type of Account That May Be Used  9.6
      • 2.  Factors to Consider  9.7
      • 3.  Deposit Before Letters Issued  9.8
        • a.  Written Receipt From Depository  9.9
        • b.  Form: Receipt and Agreement by Depository  9.10
      • 4.  Deposit on Court Order During Administration  9.11
        • a.  Form: Application to Deposit Assets Under Prob C §9703  9.12
        • b.  Use of Judicial Council Form for Receipt  9.13
        • c.  Form: Receipt and Acknowledgment of Order for the Deposit of Money Into Blocked Account (Judicial Council Form MC-356)  9.14
    • B.  Court Deposit  9.15
  • V.  SETTING BOND
    • A.  Who May Act as Surety  9.16
    • B.  Application to Surety: Evaluation of Representative’s Qualifications  9.17
    • C.  Use of Joint Control Agreements to Limit Risk to Surety  9.18
    • D.  Setting Amount of Bond
      • 1.  Different Requirements for Admitted Surety Insurer and Personal Surety  9.19
      • 2.  If Representative Granted Independent Powers  9.20
    • E.  Procedure
      • 1.  Petition and Order for Probate
        • a.  Allegations About Bond  9.21
        • b.  Form: Income in Blocked Account to Be Distributed to Personal Representative  9.22
      • 2.  Before Hearing  9.23
      • 3.  After Hearing  9.24
  • VI.  INCREASING AMOUNT OF BOND
    • A.  Court’s Authority  9.25
    • B.  Reasons for Increasing Bond  9.26
    • C.  Application to Increase Amount of Bond
      • 1.  Requirements for Application  9.27
      • 2.  Form: Ex Parte Application to Increase Bond  9.27A
    • D.  Filing Additional Bond or New Bond  9.28
  • VII.  REDUCING AMOUNT OF BOND
    • A.  Reasons to Reduce Bond After Qualification  9.29
    • B.  Reduced Bond or New Bond  9.30
    • C.  Procedure
      • 1.  Petition and Order for Reduction in Bond  9.31
        • a.  Form: Petition to Reduce Bond  9.32
        • b.  Form: Declaration in Support of Petition to Reduce Bond  9.33
        • c.  Form: Order Reducing Bond  9.34
      • 2.  If Deposit to Blocked Account Is Basis for Reduction in Bond  9.35
  • VIII.  LIABILITY ON BOND
    • A.  Surety’s Liability Based on Representative’s Acts  9.36
    • B.  Surety Guarantees Payment of Debt Representative Owes Decedent  9.37
    • C.  Extent of Surety’s Liability  9.38
      • 1.  Effect of Representative’s Resignation or Removal  9.39
      • 2.  Surety’s Liability on Successive Bonds  9.40
      • 3.  Termination of Surety’s Liability for Representative’s Future Acts
        • a.  At Surety’s Request  9.41
        • b.  At Representative’s Request  9.42
        • c.  Continued Liability of Released Surety  9.43
    • D.  Bonds of Co-Representatives  9.44
    • E.  Claims on Bond
      • 1.  Who May Sue  9.45
      • 2.  Determination of Representative’s Liability as Prerequisite to Enforcement Against Surety  9.46
      • 3.  Proceeding Against Surety
        • a.  Motion or Complaint  9.47
        • b.  Form: Notice of Motion and Motion for Judgment Enforcing Liability on Bond  9.47A
        • c.  Statute of Limitations  9.48
    • F.  Subrogation and Contribution  9.49
  • IX.  FINAL DISCHARGE OF SURETY  9.50

10

Initial Duties of Personal Representative

Alex R. Borden

  • I.  STARTING PROBATE ADMINISTRATION  10.1
    • A.  Representative as Client  10.2
    • B.  Representative as Fiduciary  10.3
    • C.  Written Instructions to Representative
      • 1.  Contents  10.4
      • 2.  Form: Sample Letter of Instructions  10.5
    • D.  Collection and Review of Documents Regarding Assets  10.6
    • E.  Collection of Decedent’s Mail  10.7
    • F.  Bookkeeping and Accounting System  10.8
    • G.  Estimate of Cash Needs  10.9
    • H.  Notice to State Agencies  10.9A
  • II.  ASSETS
    • A.  Bank and Savings Accounts
      • 1.  Decedent’s Accounts  10.10
      • 2.  Social Security Direct Deposits to Decedent’s Savings or Checking Account  10.11
      • 3.  Estate Accounts  10.12
    • B.  Estate Safe Deposit Box  10.13
    • C.  Securities
      • 1.  Stocks in Brokerage or DRIP Accounts  10.14
      • 2.  Stocks Held in Certificate Form in Decedent’s Name  10.15
      • 3.  Stocks Held in TOD Form or as Nominee  10.16
      • 4.  Government Bonds  10.17
    • D.  Insurance and Benefits  10.18
    • E.  Real Estate
      • 1.  California Real Property  10.19
        • a.  Maintenance  10.20
        • b.  Insurance  10.21
        • c.  Rentals  10.22
        • d.  Hazardous Waste Problems  10.23
      • 2.  Out-of-State Real Property  10.24
    • F.  Personal Property
      • 1.  Possession and Care  10.25
      • 2.  Appraisals  10.26
      • 3.  Anticipatory Distribution  10.27
      • 4.  Form: Receipt for Anticipatory Distribution and Indemnity Agreement  10.28
      • 5.  Automobiles  10.29
      • 6.  Perishable or Depreciating Assets  10.30
    • G.  Decedent’s Business  10.31
    • H.  Options  10.32
    • I.  Conservatorship Estate Assets  10.33
    • J.  Debts Owed Decedent  10.34
    • K.  Survival Actions  10.35
      • 1.  Decedent’s Personal Transactions  10.36
      • 2.  Amounts Owed by Beneficiaries  10.37
      • 3.  Amounts Owed by Representative  10.37A
    • L.  Treatment of Nonprobate Assets  10.38
    • M.  Digital Assets  10.38A
  • III.  LIABILITIES
    • A.  Credit Cards and Credit Profile  10.39
    • B.  Taxes  10.40
      • 1.  Income Tax Returns  10.41
      • 2.  Gift Tax Returns  10.42
      • 3.  Property Taxes  10.43
    • C.  Insurance  10.44
    • D.  Decedent’s Debts  10.45
    • E.  Loan Defaults  10.46
    • F.  Income Tax Withholding and Social Security Contributions for Employees  10.47
  • IV.  CHECKLIST: ISSUES FOR CONSIDERATION AT BEGINNING OF ESTATE ADMINISTRATION  10.48

11

Ancillary Administration

Bart J. Schenone

  • I.  WHAT IS ANCILLARY ADMINISTRATION?  11.1
  • II.  JURISDICTIONAL ISSUES
    • A.  Jurisdiction Based on Domicile  11.2
      • 1.  Determining Domicile Under California Law
        • a.  Statutory References  11.3
        • b.  Physical Presence and Subjective Intent  11.4
      • 2.  Probate Order as Determination of Jurisdiction: Full Faith and Credit  11.5
    • B.  Jurisdiction Based on Situs
      • 1.  Real Property  11.6
      • 2.  Personal Property  11.7
    • C.  Jurisdiction Over Foreign Personal Representative  11.8
  • III.  ANCILLARY ADMINISTRATION IN CALIFORNIA
    • A.  Purposes  11.9
      • 1.  Retaining Independent Jurisdiction Over Local Assets  11.10
      • 2.  Protecting Local Creditors  11.11
    • B.  When California Ancillary Administration Can Be Avoided  11.12
      • 1.  Real Property  11.13
      • 2.  Collecting Personal Property in California Under Prob C §12570  11.14
    • C.  Need for Cooperation Between Ancillary State and Domiciliary State Representatives  11.15
    • D.  Procedure  11.16
      • 1.  Requirements  11.17
      • 2.  Venue  11.18
      • 3.  Petitioner  11.19
      • 4.  Petition
        • a.  Testate Nondomiciliary Decedent  11.20
          • (1)  Authentication of Will Admitted in Foreign Country  11.21
          • (2)  Attachment to Petition
            • (a)  Contents of Attachment  11.22
            • (b)  Form: Attachment to Petition for Probate  11.23
          • (3)  Probate of Will That Does Not Qualify for Admission to Probate in California  11.24
        • b.  Intestate Nondomiciliary Decedent  11.25
      • 5.  Notice  11.26
      • 6.  When Contest or Revocation Permitted; Order  11.27
        • a.  Contents of Attachment to Order  11.28
        • b.  Form: Attachment to Order for Probate  11.29
      • 7.  Creditors’ Rights  11.30
      • 8.  Distribution to Domiciliary State Personal Representative  11.31
        • a.  Form: Appointment of Representative  11.32
        • b.  Form: Delivery of Assets; Request for Distribution  11.33
  • IV.  ANCILLARY ADMINISTRATION IN FOREIGN JURISDICTION
    • A.  Duty to Collect and Account for Foreign Assets  11.34
    • B.  Administering California Domiciliary’s Estate in Foreign Jurisdiction Proceeding  11.35
    • C.  Avoiding Foreign Ancillary Administration
      • 1.  Characterization of Property as Real or Personal Property  11.36
      • 2.  Power to Sell Foreign Real Property if Authorized in Will  11.37
    • D.  Creditors’ Claims  11.38
  • V.  TAXATION ISSUES
    • A.  Federal Estate Tax  11.39
    • B.  Federal Estate Taxation of Nonresident Alien Decedent’s Estate  11.40
    • C.  Income Tax  11.41
    • D.  Who Should File Returns?  11.42

12

Nonresident Heirs and Beneficiaries

Marie E. Galanti

Peta-Gay Gordon

  • I.  INTRODUCTION  12.1
  • II.  FOREIGN LANGUAGE DOCUMENTS
    • A.  International Wills
      • 1.  Requirements for Content and Execution  12.2
      • 2.  Requirement of Certificate  12.3
    • B.  Translation and Authentication of Foreign Documents
      • 1.  Foreign Language Will  12.4
      • 2.  Foreign Language Exhibits  12.5
  • III.  REPRESENTATIVE’S INITIAL RESPONSIBILITIES
    • A.  Applicable Law in Determining Domicile of Decedent  12.6
    • B.  Determining Domicile of Personal Representative  12.7
    • C.  Translating English Language Documents  12.8
    • D.  Identifying and Locating Heirs and Beneficiaries
      • 1.  Claim of Inheritance by Nonresident Aliens  12.9
      • 2.  Identifying Heirs and Beneficiaries
        • a.  Proof Available in United States  12.10
        • b.  Proof Available Outside United States  12.11
      • 3.  Verification and Authentication of Claims From Abroad
        • a.  Letters Rogatory and Depositions  12.12
        • b.  Certificates of Heirship and Certificates of Custom  12.13
        • c.  Heir-Finding Firms  12.14
          • (1)  Finding a Reputable Firm  12.15
          • (2)  Agreement for Payment  12.16
    • E.  Locating and Inventorying Assets  12.17
      • 1.  Personal Property  12.18
      • 2.  Real Property
        • a.  Definition of “Real Property”  12.19
        • b.  Treatment of Real Property  12.20
    • F.  Giving Notice
      • 1.  Notice of Administration and Courtesy Letter to Heirs and Beneficiaries  12.21
      • 2.  Notice to Consular Officers  12.22
  • IV.  ROLE OF ATTORNEY
    • A.  Representing Personal Representative
      • 1.  Working With Foreign Professionals  12.23
      • 2.  Determining Level of Involvement With Foreign Assets and Foreign Heirs and Beneficiaries  12.24
      • 3.  Attorney for Personal Representative Does Not Represent Heirs or Beneficiaries  12.25
    • B.  Representing Foreign Heirs or Beneficiaries  12.26
    • C.  Identifying Foreign Professionals  12.27
  • V.  DISTRIBUTION OF ESTATE TO NONRESIDENT ALIENS  12.28
    • A.  Foreign Laws and California Rules for Distribution  12.29
    • B.  California Estate Income Tax Clearance Certificate [Deleted]  12.30
    • C.  Persons to Whom Distribution May Be Made; Receipts  12.31
    • D.  Distribution to Heirs or Beneficiaries in Countries With Which United States Has No Diplomatic Relations  12.32
    • E.  Claiming Property Deposited With State Treasurer  12.33
  • VI.  TAXATION OF NONRESIDENT ALIEN HEIRS AND BENEFICIARIES
    • A.  Status of Heirs and Beneficiaries  12.34
      • 1.  United States Residents for Income Tax Purposes  12.35
      • 2.  Nonresident Spouse Treated as Resident  12.36
      • 3.  Abandonment of U.S. Citizenship or Resident Status  12.37
      • 4.  Tax on Gifts or Bequests Received From Expatriates  12.38
      • 5.  Effect of Tax Treaties  12.39
    • B.  Income Tax Issues for Estates: Withholding Requirements for Distributions to Nonresident Heirs and Beneficiaries
      • 1.  Cash and Other Personal Property
        • a.  Non-U.S. Resident Alien Heirs and Beneficiaries  12.40
        • b.  Distribution to Non-California Resident Heirs and Beneficiaries  12.41
      • 2.  Real Property Distribution From Non-U.S. Resident  12.42
    • C.  Income Tax Issues for Nonresident Heirs and Beneficiaries
      • 1.  Federal Income Tax Issues for Nonresident Heirs and Beneficiaries  12.43
      • 2.  California Income Tax Issues for Nonresident Heirs and Beneficiaries  12.44
    • D.  Federal Estate Tax and Foreign Inheritance Tax
      • 1.  United States Estate and Gift Tax  12.45
      • 2.  Inheritance Tax Laws of Foreign Countries  12.46
      • 3.  Double-Taxation Issues  12.47

13

Inventory and Appraisal

David J. Elefant

  • I.  INTRODUCTION: FUNCTION OF INVENTORY  13.1
  • II.  FIRST STEPS
    • A.  Information Gathering by Attorney and Personal Representative
      • 1.  At Initial Interview  13.2
      • 2.  Others Who May Have Information About Assets  13.3
      • 3.  Resources for Searching for Possible Assets  13.4
      • 4.  Asset Information Available Only Online  13.5
      • 5.  Discovery to Locate Property  13.6
    • B.  Appointment of Probate Referee
      • 1.  Appointment Procedures  13.7
      • 2.  Personal Representative’s Designation of Particular Probate Referee  13.8
      • 3.  Personal Representative’s Removal of First Designated Probate Referee  13.9
      • 4.  Waiver of Probate Referee’s Appraisal  13.10
      • 5.  Practical Considerations of Seeking Waiver  13.11
      • 6.  Form: Petition for Waiver of Appraisal by Probate Referee (Prob C §8903)  13.12
  • III.  PREPARING INVENTORY AND APPRAISAL
    • A.  Appraisal Responsibilities  13.13
      • 1.  Probate Referee Guide  13.14
      • 2.  Personal Representative (Attachment 1)
        • a.  Assets Appraised by Personal Representative  13.15
        • b.  Separate Letter to Assist Probate Referee  13.16
      • 3.  Probate Referee (Attachment 2)  13.17
        • a.  Assets Appraised by Probate Referee  13.18
        • b.  Valuation of Assets  13.19
        • c.  Time for Probate Referee’s Appraisal; Status Report  13.20
        • d.  Invoking Court Action  13.21
        • e.  Compensation of Probate Referee  13.22
        • f.  Appraisal of Nonprobate Assets  13.23
        • g.  Form: Appraisal Report of California Probate Referee  13.24
      • 4.  Independent Appraisal  13.25
    • B.  Change in Ownership Statement; Property Tax Certificate
      • 1.  Certification Under Probate Code §8800  13.26
      • 2.  Form: Change in Ownership Statement Death of Real Property Owner (BOE-502-D)  13.26A
    • C.  Characterization and Organization of Assets
      • 1.  Interest of Decedent
        • a.  Characterization as Separate or Community Property  13.27
        • b.  Sample Form: Community Property Item  13.28
        • c.  Fractional Interests and Fractional Discounts  13.29
          • (1)  Factors Used in Valuing Fractional Discounts  13.30
          • (2)  Sample Form: Fractional Interest and Fractional Discount in Property  13.31
        • d.  Property of Doubtful Ownership  13.32
      • 2.  Format  13.33
        • a.  Grouping Parallel to Federal Estate Tax Return  13.34
        • b.  Alternative Organization Suggestions  13.35
    • D.  Listing Assets
      • 1.  Attachment 1
        • a.  Cash and Cash Equivalents (Form 706, Schedule C)  13.36
          • (1)  Financial Institution Accounts  13.37
          • (2)  Uncashed Checks; Refunds  13.38
        • b.  Life Insurance (Form 706, Schedule D or F)  13.39
      • 2.  Attachment 2
        • a.  Real Property in California (Form 706, Schedule A)
          • (1)  Methods of Valuation  13.40
          • (2)  Information Supplied in Personal Representative’s Letter  13.41
          • (3)  Information Required on Inventory  13.42
          • (4)  Property Subject to Encumbrances, Contract, or Deed of Trust  13.43
          • (5)  Remainder Interest Subject to Life Tenancy  13.44
          • (6)  Improved Real Property  13.45
          • (7)  Leases  13.45A
          • (8)  Water Company Stock Appurtenant to Land  13.45B
        • b.  Mineral Interests and Royalties
          • (1)  Types of Rights and Valuations  13.45C
          • (2)  Mineral Interests  13.45D
          • (3)  Mineral Leases  13.45E
          • (4)  Royalty Interests  13.45F
        • c.  Stocks and Bonds (Form 706, Schedule B)
          • (1)  Methods of Valuation  13.46
          • (2)  CUSIP Numbers  13.46A
          • (3)  Stocks  13.47
          • (4)  Bonds  13.48
        • d.  Mortgages and Notes (Form 706, Schedule C)
          • (1)  Promissory Notes
            • (a)  Valuation  13.49
            • (b)  How to List in Inventory  13.50
          • (2)  Contracts for Sale of Real Property  13.51
          • (3)  Form: Sample Mortgage and Note Listings  13.52
        • e.  Life Insurance (Form 706, Schedule D or F)  13.53
        • f.  Miscellaneous Property (Form 706, Schedule F)
          • (1)  Business Interests  13.54
          • (2)  Information Needed to Value Business Interests  13.55
            • (a)  Limited Partnerships and Limited Liability Companies (LLCs)  13.56
            • (b)  General Partnerships  13.57
            • (c)  Closely Held Corporations  13.58
          • (3)  Tangible Personal Property  13.59
          • (4)  Digital Assets  13.59A
          • (5)  Other Miscellaneous Assets  13.60
    • E.  Assets Not Subject to Probate and Not Included in Inventory  13.61
      • 1.  Joint Tenancy Property  13.62
      • 2.  Assets With Beneficiary Designations  13.62A
      • 3.  Out-of-State Property: Real Property and Tangible Personal Property  13.63
      • 4.  Inter Vivos Trusts and Transfers  13.64
      • 5.  Life Estates  13.65
      • 6.  Miscellaneous Items  13.66
    • F.  Form: Inventory and Appraisal (Judicial Council Form DE-160) and Attachment (DE-161)  13.67
    • G.  Checklist: Common Errors in Preparation of Inventory  13.68
  • IV.  FILING INVENTORY AND APPRAISAL; FURTHER ACTIONS
    • A.  Original and Copies  13.69
    • B.  When Inventory Due
      • 1.  Four-Month Limit  13.70
      • 2.  Filing Partial Inventory  13.71
      • 3.  Extension of Time to File  13.72
      • 4.  Penalties  13.73
      • 5.  Removal of Probate Referee for Incompetence or Undue Delay  13.74
    • C.  Giving Notice to Those Who Have Requested Special Notice
      • 1.  Special Notice Under Prob C §1250  13.75
      • 2.  Form: Notice of Filing of Inventory and Appraisal  13.76
    • D.  Challenging Referee’s Opinion and Objecting to Appraisals  13.77
    • E.  Increasing or Decreasing Bond  13.78
  • V.  ADDITIONAL INVENTORIES  13.79
    • A.  Reappraisal for Sale of Real Property  13.80
    • B.  Supplemental Inventory for Newly Discovered Property  13.81
    • C.  Form: Corrected Inventory  13.82
  • VI.  CALIFORNIA PROBATE REFEREE GUIDE  13.83

14

Creditors’ Claims

Margaret M. Hand

  • I.  INTRODUCTION  14.1
    • A.  Basic Statutory Provisions for Creditors’ Claims  14.2
    • B.  Checklist: Personal Representative’s Handling of Creditors’ Claims  14.3
  • II.  PERSONAL REPRESENTATIVE: GIVING NOTICE TO CREDITORS  14.4
    • A.  Notice to State Agencies: Medi-Cal Recipients; Heirs in Correctional Facilities  14.4A
    • B.  Publication of Notice; Proof of Publication  14.5
    • C.  Notice to Known or Reasonably Ascertainable Creditors Required  14.6
      • 1.  When Notice Not Required  14.7
      • 2.  Impracticable and Extended Searches Not Required  14.8
      • 3.  Practical Suggestions
        • a.  Advise Personal Representative of Duties Regarding Creditors  14.9
        • b.  Steps to Take to Identify Creditors  14.10
      • 4.  Ascertaining Addresses of Creditors  14.11
      • 5.  Time for Giving Notice  14.12
      • 6.  Form: Notice of Administration to Creditors (Judicial Council Form DE-157)  14.13
      • 7.  Proof of Service of Notice  14.14
    • D.  Immunity of Personal Representative From Liability  14.15
    • E.  Providing Assistance to Creditors: Legal and Practical Warnings  14.16
  • III.  CREDITOR: PREPARING, FILING, AND SERVING CLAIM; OTHER ACTIONS
    • A.  What Is a “Claim”?
      • 1.  Statutory Definition of “Claim”  14.17
      • 2.  Case Law: “Claim” Includes Breach of Agreement to Make Distribution From Estate  14.17A
      • 3.  Disputes Over Title or Ownership Are Not Claims  14.18
      • 4.  State Agency Seeking Enforcement of Remediation Order Was Not Creditor  14.18A
    • B.  Types of Claims That Generally Must Be Filed and Served  14.19
      • 1.  Claims Based on Contract  14.20
      • 2.  Unmatured or Contingent Claims  14.21
      • 3.  Claims on Actions Pending at Date of Death  14.22
      • 4.  Claims on Actions Not Pending at Date of Death  14.23
      • 5.  Claims for Damages Covered by Decedent’s Insurance  14.24
      • 6.  Claims for Funeral Expenses  14.25
        • a.  Limitations on Funeral Expenses  14.26
        • b.  Reimbursement for Funeral Expenses Paid by Others  14.27
      • 7.  Breach of Agreement to Make Distribution From Trust or Estate  14.27A
    • C.  Circumstances in Which Filing Claim Not Required  14.28
    • D.  Creditor’s Claim From Beneficiary May Be a Will Contest  14.29
    • E.  Procedure
      • 1.  Preparation of Claims and Supporting Declarations  14.30
        • a.  Describing Claim With Particularity  14.31
        • b.  Claims for Services  14.32
        • c.  Claims on Written Instruments  14.33
        • d.  Secured Claims  14.34
        • e.  Documentary Support of Unmatured or Contingent Claims  14.35
        • f.  Claim of Representative, Attorney, or Judge  14.36
        • g.  Form: Creditor’s Claim (Judicial Council Form DE-172)  14.37
      • 2.  Time for Filing Claims
        • a.  Filing Before Probate Is Open or Letters Issued  14.38
        • b.  Filing When Creditor Has Actual Knowledge of Administration  14.39
        • c.  Filing When No Notice of Administration  14.40
        • d.  Filing Petition for Allowance of Late Claim  14.41
        • e.  1-Year Statute of Limitations Under CCP §366.2  14.42
        • f.  1-Year Statute of Limitations Under CCP §366.3  14.42A
      • 3.  Service on Representative  14.43
      • 4.  Amendment of Claim  14.44
    • F.  Other Possible Creditor Actions
      • 1.  Initiate Probate Proceeding  14.45
      • 2.  File Request for Special Notice  14.46
      • 3.  Seek Remedies if Not Served With Notice of Administration  14.47
        • a.  Personal Representative’s Liability  14.48
        • b.  Distributee Liability  14.49
      • 4.  Seek Remedy of Equitable Estoppel to Toll Statute of Limitations  14.50
  • IV.  PERSONAL REPRESENTATIVE: RESPONSE TO CLAIMS
    • A.  Consideration of Claims
      • 1.  Require Proof of Claim  14.51
      • 2.  Keep Record of Creditors’ Claims  14.52
      • 3.  Decide Whether to Waive Claims Defective in Form  14.53
    • B.  Allowance or Rejection of Claims
      • 1.  Claims Filed With Court  14.54
      • 2.  Personal Representative Acting Under IAEA  14.55
      • 3.  Personal Representative Not Acting Under IAEA
        • a.  Notice of Allowance or Rejection of Claim  14.56
        • b.  Seeking Court Approval of Allowance of Claim  14.57
      • 4.  Form: Allowance or Rejection of Creditor’s Claim (Judicial Council Form DE-174)  14.58
    • C.  Settling Disputed or Uncollectible Claims by Agreement or Compromise
      • 1.  Personal Representative With IAEA Powers  14.59
      • 2.  Personal Representative Without IAEA Powers
        • a.  Summary Determination of Controversy Over Claim  14.60
        • b.  Compromise of Claims  14.61
    • D.  Paying Claims
      • 1.  Order of Priority of Classes of Debts  14.62
      • 2.  Payment of Allowed Claims  14.63
      • 3.  Paying Claims in Insolvent Estates  14.64
      • 4.  Payment of Contingent, Disputed Debts or Debts Not Yet Due  14.65
      • 5.  Other Rules on Payment of Claims  14.66
      • 6.  Interest  14.67
      • 7.  Secured Claims  14.68
      • 8.  Settlement of Claims Paid Without Filing Creditor’s Claim  14.69
    • E.  If Validity or Payment of Claim Is Contested  14.70
  • V.  CREDITOR: SUIT ON CLAIM
    • A.  Threshold Requirement  14.71
    • B.  Personal Representative’s Failure to Act Treated as Rejection of Claim  14.72
    • C.  Time Limitations
      • 1.  General 1-Year Period of Limitations Under CCP §366.2  14.73
        • a.  Tolling 1-Year Statute  14.74
        • b.  Equitable Estoppel  14.75
        • c.  Exceptions to CCP §366.2.  14.76
      • 2.  Claims Based on Decedent’s Promise to Make Postdeath Gift Under CCP §366.3  14.77
      • 3.  90-Day Period for Suit on Rejected Claims  14.78
      • 4.  Time Limit to Substitute Representative as Defendant in Pending Action  14.79
    • D.  Procedural Guide: Suit on Claim  14.80
    • E.  Venue  14.81
    • F.  Notice of Pendency of Action
      • 1.  Filing Notice in Probate Proceeding  14.82
      • 2.  Form: Notice of Pendency of Action  14.83
    • G.  Pleadings in Action Against Estate
      • 1.  Complaint  14.84
      • 2.  Form: Complaint  14.85
      • 3.  Special Rules for Claims by Representative or Attorney  14.86
      • 4.  Pleadings by Representative  14.87
    • H.  Statements of Decedent Regarding Claim as Evidence  14.88
    • I.  Effect of Judgment  14.89

15

Independent Administration of Estates

Sarah S. Broomer

Janice Crosetti-Titmus

  • I.  THE BASICS
    • A.  Purpose  15.1
    • B.  Full Versus Limited Authority  15.2
    • C.  Classification of IAEA Representative’s Powers  15.3
    • D.  Fiduciary Standard of Care  15.4
  • II.  PETITION FOR AUTHORITY TO ADMINISTER ESTATE UNDER IAEA
    • A.  Who May Petition; Full or Limited Powers  15.5
    • B.  Request as Part of Petition for Probate or in Separate Petition  15.6
    • C.  Bond  15.7
    • D.  Form: Petition for Authority Under IAEA  15.8
    • E.  Notice of Hearing
      • 1.  Requirements  15.9
      • 2.  Form: Warning That Must Be Included in Notice of Hearing  15.10
    • F.  Objection to Petition for Authority Under IAEA  15.11
    • G.  Form: Order Granting Authority Under IAEA  15.12
    • H.  Letters Must Include Description of Authority  15.13
  • III.  EXERCISE OF IAEA AUTHORITY
    • A.  Practical Considerations in Deciding How to Proceed  15.14
      • 1.  When Court Supervision May Be Preferred Even When Not Required  15.15
      • 2.  When Court Supervision May Be Preferred Over Notice of Proposed Action  15.16
    • B.  Actions Requiring Court Supervision
      • 1.  Whether Granted Full or Limited Authority (Prob C §10501(a))  15.17
      • 2.  Exceptions to Prob C §10501(a) Requirement  15.18
      • 3.  When Granted Only Limited Authority  15.19
    • C.  Actions Requiring Notice of Proposed Action  15.20
      • 1.  Notice Always Required  15.21
      • 2.  Notice Required in Some Circumstances  15.22
      • 3.  Procedure for Giving Notice of Proposed Action
        • a.  When, How, and to Whom Notice Given  15.23
        • b.  Consent to Proposed Action  15.24
        • c.  Waiver of Notice of Proposed Action
          • (1)  Use of Judicial Council Form  15.25
          • (2)  When to Consider Waiver  15.26
        • d.  Form: Notice of Proposed Action (Objection—Consent) (Judicial Council Form DE-165)  15.27
        • e.  Form: Waiver of Notice of Proposed Action (Probate) (Judicial Council Form DE-166)  15.28
      • 4.  Challenging Proposed Action
        • a.  Who May Challenge; Methods of Challenging  15.29
        • b.  Objection  15.30
        • c.  Restraining Order  15.31
          • (1)  Form: Ex Parte Application for Restraining Order  15.32
          • (2)  Form: Restraining Order  15.33
        • d.  Court Supervision Required if There Is Objection or Restraining Order  15.34
      • 5.  Effect of Failure to Object  15.35
      • 6.  Grounds for Removal of Personal Representative  15.36
      • 7.  Protection of Bona Fide Purchaser  15.37
    • D.  Actions Not Requiring Notice of Proposed Action  15.38
  • IV.  REVOCATION OF AUTHORITY FOR INDEPENDENT ADMINISTRATION  15.39
  • V.  CHART: ESTATE TRANSACTIONS UNDER INDEPENDENT ADMINISTRATION  15.40

16

Petition for Instructions or Confirmation

Craig L. Judson

Sharon M. Nagle

  • I.  NATURE OF PROCEEDING  16.1
    • A.  Matters Subject to Petition  16.2
    • B.  When Other Procedures Available  16.3
  • II.  PROCEDURE
    • A.  Who May Petition  16.4
    • B.  Preparing Petition  16.5
      • 1.  Pleading in the Alternative When Uncertain  16.6
      • 2.  Use by Administrator With Will Annexed or Representative With Independent Powers  16.7
    • C.  Form: Petition to Authorize and Instruct or Approve and Confirm Action of Personal Representative  16.8
    • D.  Notice  16.9
    • E.  Objection to Petition  16.10
    • F.  Order  16.11
    • G.  Form: Order Authorizing and Instructing or Approving and Confirming Acts of Personal Representative  16.12
    • H.  Appeal; Effect of Final Order  16.13

17

Statutory Protections for Family Members

Craig L. Judson

Sharon M. Nagle

Ruth A. Phelps

  • I.  INTRODUCTION  17.1
  • II.  EXEMPT AND HOMESTEAD PROPERTY  17.2
    • A.  Persons Protected Under Prob C §§6500, 6510, 6521  17.3
      • 1.  Decedent Is Survived by Surviving Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner and Child  17.4
      • 2.  Who Is Decedent’s Surviving Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner?  17.5
      • 3.  Who Is Not Decedent’s Surviving Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner?  17.6
      • 4.  Minor Children  17.7
      • 5.  Loss of Right Due to Waiver or Express or Implied Conduct  17.8
    • B.  Temporary Possession of Family Dwelling and Exempt Property (Prob C §6500)  17.9
      • 1.  Exempt Property  17.10
      • 2.  Petition; Notice  17.11
      • 3.  Form: Petition for Order Modifying Period of Temporary Possession of Family Dwelling and Exempt Property  17.12
      • 4.  Form: Order Modifying Period for Temporary Possession of Family Dwelling and Exempt Property  17.13
    • C.  Setting Aside Exempt Property Other Than Family Dwelling (Prob C §6510)  17.14
      • 1.  Contents of Petition; Notice  17.15
      • 2.  Form: Petition for Order Setting Aside Exempt Personal Property  17.16
      • 3.  Form: Order Setting Aside Exempt Personal Property  17.17
    • D.  Probate Homestead Set-Aside (Prob C §6520)
      • 1.  Purpose  17.18
      • 2.  Relationship to Declared Homestead  17.19
      • 3.  Relationship to Local Ordinances  17.20
      • 4.  Persons Protected  17.21
      • 5.  Selection of Property
        • a.  Only Estate Property Eligible  17.22
        • b.  Priority of Property: Community, Quasi-Community, Separate Property  17.23
        • c.  Nature of Dwellings to Be Set Aside  17.24
        • d.  Property Vested in Third Persons Not Eligible Absent Consent  17.25
      • 6.  Court’s Discretion; Factors It Must Consider  17.26
      • 7.  Duration  17.27
      • 8.  Rights of Parties; Right to Partition  17.28
      • 9.  Liability of Probate Homestead Property for Claims  17.29
      • 10.  Procedure to Obtain Order for Probate Homestead Set-Aside
        • a.  Who May Petition; Notice  17.30
        • b.  Contents of Petition  17.31
        • c.  Form: Petition for Order Setting Aside Probate Homestead  17.32
        • d.  Form: Order Setting Aside Probate Homestead  17.33
        • e.  Order Setting Aside Probate Homestead Must Be Recorded  17.34
        • f.  Appeal  17.35
        • g.  Modification or Termination  17.36
      • 11.  Income and Estate Tax Consequences of Homestead Set-Aside  17.37
  • III.  FAMILY ALLOWANCE
    • A.  Purpose  17.38
    • B.  Practical Considerations  17.39
    • C.  Potential Recipients
      • 1.  Those Entitled to Family Allowance  17.40
      • 2.  Those Eligible for Family Allowance in Court’s Discretion  17.41
      • 3.  Difference Between Classes of Persons Eligible  17.42
    • D.  Determining Amount of Award
      • 1.  Amount Necessary According to Recipient’s Circumstances  17.43
        • a.  Child Support Payments  17.44
        • b.  Preliminary Distributions  17.45
      • 2.  When More Than One Person Eligible  17.46
    • E.  Source of Funds
      • 1.  Charge Against Estate  17.47
      • 2.  Income or Principal  17.48
    • F.  Date of First Payment; Retroactivity  17.49
    • G.  Duration
      • 1.  If Estate Is Solvent  17.50
      • 2.  If Estate Is Insolvent  17.51
      • 3.  Continuation of Estate Administration to Pay Family Allowance in Limited Circumstances  17.52
    • H.  Priority of Family Allowance in Payment of Decedent’s Debts  17.53
    • I.  Procedure  17.54
      • 1.  Payments Under Independent Administration of Estates Act (IAEA)  17.55
      • 2.  Petition Under Prob C §6540  17.56
        • a.  When Petition May Be Filed Ex Parte  17.57
        • b.  Who May Petition  17.58
        • c.  Contents of Petition: Necessary Allegations  17.59
        • d.  Notice  17.60
        • e.  Form: Petition for Payment of Family Allowance  17.61
        • f.  Form: Order for Family Allowance  17.62
      • 3.  Modification and Termination of Family Allowance
        • a.  Modification  17.63
        • b.  Termination  17.64
        • c.  Petition to Modify or Terminate Family Allowance; Notice  17.65
          • (1)  Form: Petition to Modify or Terminate Family Allowance  17.66
          • (2)  Form: Order Modifying or Terminating Family Allowance  17.67
      • 4.  Appealability of Court Order; Stay of Family Allowance Pending Appeal  17.68
      • 5.  Conclusiveness of Orders; Collateral Attack  17.69
    • J.  Income and Estate Tax Consequences of Family Allowance  17.70

18

Sales of Estate Property

Deanna D. Lyon

  • I.  GENERAL RULES FOR PROBATE SALES OF REAL AND PERSONAL PROPERTY  18.1
    • A.  Attorney Supervision  18.2
    • B.  When Property May or Must Be Sold
      • 1.  Testamentary Power or Duty  18.3
      • 2.  Discretionary Authority
        • a.  Grounds for Discretionary Sale  18.4
        • b.  Determining Necessity or Estate Advantage
          • (1)  When Sale Improper  18.5
          • (2)  When Sale Proper  18.6
      • 3.  Petition to Compel Sale by Interested Person  18.7
      • 4.  Scope of Discretion of Personal Representative  18.8
        • a.  Effect of Rules of Abatement  18.9
        • b.  Sale of Specifically Devised Property  18.10
    • C.  Public or Private Sale  18.11
    • D.  Appraisal and Sale of Real or Personal Property as Unit  18.12
    • E.  Application of Proceeds in Sales of Encumbered Property  18.13
    • F.  Sale for More or Less Than Appraised Value  18.14
    • G.  Sale of Cotenancy Interest  18.15
    • H.  Void or Voidable Sales
      • 1.  Lack of Jurisdiction Versus Procedural Errors  18.16
      • 2.  Prohibited Sale to Personal Representative or Representative’s Attorney  18.17
    • I.  Employment and Compensation of Broker, Agent, Auctioneer
      • 1.  Written Contract
        • a.  Contract With Broker or Agent for Sale of Real or Personal Property  18.18
        • b.  Contract With Auctioneer for Sale of Real or Personal Property  18.19
        • c.  Contract Provision for Compensation  18.20
        • d.  Liability Under Contract  18.21
      • 2.  Petition to Execute Exclusive Listing Agreement for Real Property  18.22
        • a.  Contents of Petition  18.23
        • b.  Form: Ex Parte Petition to Execute Exclusive Listing Agreement  18.24
        • c.  Form: Order Authorizing Execution of Exclusive Listing Agreement  18.25
      • 3.  Compensation
        • a.  General Rules  18.26
        • b.  Broker or Agent
          • (1)  Court Determines Compensation  18.27
          • (2)  Specific Probate Code Provisions Governing Compensation  18.28
        • c.  Auctioneer  18.29
  • II.  SALE OF REAL PROPERTY
    • A.  Preliminary Considerations for Personal Representative
      • 1.  Review Contents of Exclusive Listing Agreement  18.30
      • 2.  Contact Title Company Early  18.31
    • B.  Sale Under Independent Administration of Estates Act
      • 1.  Personal Representative’s Authority to Sell Without Court Confirmation  18.32
      • 2.  When Notice of Proposed Action Required Under IAEA  18.33
      • 3.  When Personal Representative May Choose to Proceed With Court Approval  18.34
      • 4.  Situations in Which Court Confirmation Required Under IAEA  18.35
        • a.  Property Sold to or Exchanged for Property of Personal Representative or Representative’s Attorney; Sold or Exchanged Under Limited Authority  18.36
        • b.  Objection to Proposed Action or Restraining Order Issued  18.37
    • C.  Court Confirmation Required or Sought  18.38
      • 1.  Checklist: Reasons for Delay in Confirming Sales of Real Property  18.39
      • 2.  Notice of Sale  18.40
        • a.  Publication of Notice
          • (1)  When Publication Required  18.41
          • (2)  Manner of Publishing Notice  18.42
          • (3)  When to Publish Notice  18.43
        • b.  Order Shortening Time of Notice
          • (1)  Statutory Provisions  18.44
          • (2)  Form: Order Shortening Time of Notice of Sale  18.45
        • c.  What to Include in Notice
          • (1)  Statutory Requirements  18.46
          • (2)  Optional Information and Local Rule Requirements  18.47
            • (a)  Sale as Unit  18.48
            • (b)  Sale of Undivided Interest  18.49
            • (c)  Disclosure of Encumbrances  18.50
            • (d)  Sale for Cash or Credit  18.51
          • (3)  Form: Notice of Sale  18.52
      • 3.  Place, Date, and Time of Public Auction  18.53
      • 4.  Bids in Private Sales  18.54
        • a.  Bid Terms  18.55
        • b.  Bidder’s Assumption of Encumbrances  18.56
        • c.  Form: Bid to Purchase Real Property; Representative’s and Broker’s Acceptance  18.57
        • d.  Purchase Agreement  18.58
        • e.  Disclosures; Minimizing Claims of Misrepresentation
          • (1)  Extent of Exemptions From Disclosures  18.59
          • (2)  Required Disclosures  18.60
          • (3)  Form: Buyer Has Not Relied on Representations by Seller  18.61
      • 5.  Timing of Sale  18.62
      • 6.  Preliminary Title Report  18.63
      • 7.  Appraisal for Sale
        • a.  Statutory Requirements  18.64
        • b.  Practical Considerations  18.65
      • 8.  Report of Sale and Petition for Confirmation of Sale of Real Property  18.66
        • a.  Preparing Report and Petition for Confirmation  18.67
          • (1)  Particulars of Sale  18.68
          • (2)  Statement About Bond  18.69
        • b.  Form: Report of Sale and Petition for Order Confirming Sale of Real Property (Judicial Council Form DE-260/GC-060)  18.70
      • 9.  Hearing to Confirm Sale
        • a.  Notice of Hearing  18.71
        • b.  Requirements for Court Confirmation of Private Sale  18.72
        • c.  Overbids  18.73
          • (1)  Must Be in Writing  18.74
          • (2)  Required Amount  18.75
          • (3)  Discretion of Court  18.76
          • (4)  Form: Increased Bid in Open Court  18.77
        • d.  Order Confirming Sale  18.78
        • e.  Form: Order Confirming Sale of Real Property (Judicial Council Form DE-265/GC-065)  18.79
      • 10.  Actions After Court Order
        • a.  Dealing With Title Company
          • (1)  Certified Copy of Order to Title Company  18.80
          • (2)  Information About Federal Estate Tax  18.81
        • b.  Passing Title With Deed  18.82
        • c.  Form: Deed to Real Property  18.83
      • 11.  Appeal; Motion to Set Aside Order  18.84
      • 12.  Representative’s Remedies
        • a.  If Purchaser Withdraws Before Confirmation of Sale  18.85
        • b.  If Purchaser Defaults After Confirmation of Sale  18.86
      • 13.  Sales of Particular Types of Real Property
        • a.  Specific Statutory Provisions  18.87
        • b.  Leaseholds  18.88
        • c.  Condominiums and Cooperative Apartments  18.89
        • d.  Dedication or Conveyance of Interest in Real Property  18.90
  • III.  SALE OF PERSONAL PROPERTY
    • A.  Sale Under Independent Administration of Estates Act
      • 1.  When Notice of Proposed Action Required; Exceptions  18.91
      • 2.  When Court Confirmation Required
        • a.  If Objection to Proposed Action, or Restraining Order Issued  18.92
        • b.  If Property Sold to or Exchanged for Property of Personal Representative or Representative’s Attorney  18.93
        • c.  If Personal Representative Elects to Obtain Court Supervision  18.94
      • 3.  Procedure  18.95
    • B.  Sales of Particular Types of Personal Property
      • 1.  Specific Statutory Provisions  18.96
      • 2.  Notice of Sale, Prior Court Approval, and Subsequent Court Confirmation or Approval Not Required  18.97
      • 3.  Simplified Procedure for Securities  18.98
        • a.  Petition for Authority to Sell Securities  18.99
        • b.  Form: Ex Parte Petition for Authority to Sell Securities and Order (Judicial Council Form DE-270/GC-070)  18.100
        • c.  When Notice of Sale Not Required  18.101
        • d.  Notice of Hearing  18.102
      • 4.  Sales of Perishable or Depreciating Property, or Property Needed for Family Allowance
        • a.  Notice of Sale and Court Confirmation or Approval Not Required  18.103
        • b.  Passage of Title  18.104
        • c.  Definition of “Perishable” or “Depreciating” Property  18.105
        • d.  Court Confirmation or Approval  18.106
        • e.  Procedure for Obtaining Court Approval  18.107
        • f.  Form: Ex Parte Petition for Approval of Sale of Personal Property and Order (Judicial Council Form DE-275/GC-075)  18.108
    • C.  All Other Sales: Notice of Sale and Court Confirmation Required  18.109
      • 1.  Notice of Sale  18.110
        • a.  Required Contents of Notice  18.111
          • (1)  Cash or Credit  18.112
          • (2)  No Requirement That Minimum Price Be Percentage of Appraised Value or That Inventory and Appraisal Be Filed  18.113
        • b.  Form: Notice of Sale  18.114
      • 2.  Local Rule May Require Appraisal  18.115
      • 3.  Sale or Auction  18.116
      • 4.  Report of Sale and Petition for Order Confirming Sale of Personal Property  18.117
        • a.  Contents of Report and Petition  18.118
        • b.  Form: Report of Sale and Petition for Order Confirming Sale of Personal Property  18.119
      • 5.  Confirmation of Sale
        • a.  Notice of Hearing  18.120
        • b.  Overbids  18.121
        • c.  Hearing and Order  18.122
        • d.  Form: Order Confirming Sale of Personal Property  18.123
      • 6.  Effect of Order  18.124
      • 7.  Transfer of Title
        • a.  Bill of Sale  18.125
        • b.  Form: Bill of Sale  18.126
        • c.  Transfer of Motor Vehicles  18.127

19

Investments and Purchases of Property

May Lee Tong

  • I.  KEY CONCEPTS
    • A.  Duty to Preserve Estate  19.1
    • B.  Preservation of Estate Versus Investment  19.2
    • C.  Standard of Care
      • 1.  Ordinary Care and Diligence: Prob C §9600  19.3
      • 2.  Trustee’s Prudent Investor Rule Does Not Apply  19.4
    • D.  Hiring Outside Investment Advisors  19.5
      • 1.  Form: Petition for Authority to Employ Investment Advisor  19.6
      • 2.  Form: Order Authorizing Employment of Investment Advisor  19.7
    • E.  Chart: Summary of Probate Code Investment Provisions  19.8
  • II.  PERSONAL REPRESENTATIVE WITH AUTHORITY UNDER THE INDEPENDENT ADMINISTRATION OF ESTATES ACT (IAEA)  19.9
    • A.  Investments Authorized Without Notice, Notice of Proposed Action, or Court Approval  19.10
    • B.  Investments Requiring Notice of Proposed Action  19.11
  • III.  PERSONAL REPRESENTATIVE WITHOUT IAEA AUTHORITY
    • A.  Investments Authorized Without Court Approval
      • 1.  Cash in Insured Interest-Bearing Accounts  19.12
        • a.  Title on Account  19.13
        • b.  Deciding When and How Much to Invest in Interest-Bearing Accounts  19.14
      • 2.  Direct Obligations of United States or California  19.15
      • 3.  Money Market Mutual Funds  19.16
      • 4.  Common Trust Fund Units  19.17
    • B.  Investments Authorized With Court Approval
      • 1.  As Authorized in Will  19.18
        • a.  Scope of Investment Power in Will  19.19
        • b.  Procedure
          • (1)  Petition and Notice  19.20
          • (2)  Order  19.21
      • 2.  Federal and State Securities  19.22
      • 3.  Purchase of Annuity for Beneficiary
        • a.  Difference Between Annuity and Income From Trust  19.23
        • b.  Authority to Purchase Annuity Contained in Will  19.24
        • c.  Source of Funds  19.25
        • d.  Practical Considerations  19.26
        • e.  Petition; Notice  19.27
        • f.  Order  19.28
        • g.  Form: Petition for Authority to Purchase Annuity  19.29
        • h.  Form: Order Authorizing Representative to Purchase Annuity Policy  19.30
      • 4.  Exercise Option  19.31
      • 5.  Purchase Securities or Commodities Sold Short  19.32
      • 6.  Subscription Rights  19.33
      • 7.  Court May Authorize Other Investments  19.34
        • a.  Petition for Authority to Invest Estate Funds
          • (1)  Preparing Petition  19.35
          • (2)  Form: Petition for Authority to Invest Money  19.36
        • b.  Form: Order for Investment of Funds  19.37

20

Compromise and Settlement of Claims

Andrea Gee

  • I.  OVERVIEW
    • A.  Personal Representative’s Authority to Compromise and Settle Claims  20.1
    • B.  Advantages to Estate  20.2
  • II.  POWER TO ACT WITHOUT COURT AUTHORIZATION
    • A.  Authority Under Independent Administration of Estates Act
      • 1.  Actions Allowed Without Giving Notice of Proposed Action  20.3
      • 2.  Actions Allowed Only After Giving Notice of Proposed Action  20.4
      • 3.  Whether to Seek Court Authorization or Give Notice of Proposed Action When Not Required  20.5
    • B.  General Powers of Personal Representative: When Authorization, Instruction, Approval, and Confirmation Not Required  20.6
      • 1.  Specific Types of Claims That May Be Compromised or Settled Without Court Authorization; Practical Considerations  20.7
      • 2.  Exceptions to General Authority to Compromise or Settle Claims  20.8
    • C.  Report of Compromised Claims in Report and Account  20.9
  • III.  POWER TO ACT WITH COURT AUTHORIZATION
    • A.  When Required
      • 1.  Under IAEA  20.10
      • 2.  Under General Powers  20.11
    • B.  When Available But Not Required  20.12
    • C.  Protecting Representative From Liability: A Practical Consideration  20.13
    • D.  When to File Petition  20.14
    • E.  Procedure
      • 1.  Petition  20.15
      • 2.  Notice  20.16
      • 3.  Hearing and Order  20.17
      • 4.  Actions After Order
        • a.  Appeal  20.18
        • b.  Transfer of Real Property to Carry Out Order  20.19
        • c.  Compliance With Compromise and Settlement  20.20
  • IV.  SPECIFIC COMPROMISES AND SETTLEMENTS
    • A.  Compromise and Settlement of Claims or Suits Against Estate  20.21
      • 1.  Contents of Petition  20.22
      • 2.  Form: Petition for Order Authorizing Compromise and Settlement of Creditor’s Claim or Suit  20.23
      • 3.  Form: Order Authorizing Compromise and Settlement of Creditor’s Claim or Suit  20.24
    • B.  Compromise of Obligations Due Decedent  20.25
      • 1.  Form: Petition for Order Authorizing Discharge of Obligation Due Decedent  20.26
      • 2.  Form: Order Authorizing Representative to Discharge Obligation Due Decedent  20.27
    • C.  Compromise of Claims Involving Encumbered Estate Real Property
      • 1.  Introduction  20.28
      • 2.  Antideficiency Protection Under Purchase Money Note  20.29
      • 3.  Representative’s Authority to Stop Payment on Estate Obligation  20.30
      • 4.  Petition to Compromise and Petition for Instructions Compared  20.31
      • 5.  Creditors’ Claims Requirements  20.32
      • 6.  Form: Petition for Order Authorizing Compromise of Claim Against Estate and Conveyance of Property to Lender in Complete Satisfaction of Estate’s Obligation Under Purchase Money Note  20.33
      • 7.  Form: Order Authorizing Compromise of Claim Against Estate and Conveyance of Property to Lender in Complete Satisfaction of Estate’s Obligation Under Purchase Money Note  20.34
    • D.  Accepting Deed in Lieu of Foreclosure or Sale  20.35
      • 1.  Advantages to Estate  20.36
      • 2.  Form: Petition for Order Authorizing Acceptance of Deed in Lieu of Foreclosure  20.37
      • 3.  Form: Order Authorizing Acceptance of Deed in Lieu of Foreclosure  20.38
    • E.  Granting Partial Satisfaction or Partial Reconveyance  20.39
      • 1.  Form: Petition for Order Authorizing Partial Satisfaction and Reconveyance  20.40
      • 2.  Form: Order Authorizing Partial Satisfaction and Reconveyance  20.41

21

Borrowing Money

Alex R. Borden

  • I.  DECISION TO BORROW
    • A.  Borrowing Versus Selling  21.1
    • B.  Factors for Personal Representative to Consider  21.2
      • 1.  Specifically Devised Property  21.3
      • 2.  Service and Repayment of Loan  21.4
      • 3.  Avoiding Speculation  21.5
      • 4.  Beneficiaries’ Consent  21.6
      • 5.  Possibility of Electing Installment Payment of Estate Taxes  21.7
    • C.  Informal Advances or Loans to Estate Without Prior Court Authorization
      • 1.  By Representative  21.8
      • 2.  By Devisee or Other Third Party  21.9
  • II.  BORROWING WITHOUT COURT ORDER UNDER INDEPENDENT ADMINISTRATION OF ESTATES ACT
    • A.  Power to Borrow  21.10
    • B.  Deciding Whether to Use IAEA Power or Seek Court Authority  21.11
  • III.  BORROWING WITH COURT AUTHORITY ON SECURED OR UNSECURED INSTRUMENT  21.12
    • A.  Purpose of Loan
      • 1.  Probate Code §9800  21.13
      • 2.  Acting Jointly With Other Co-Owners  21.14
    • B.  When Surviving Spouse’s Consent Required  21.15
    • C.  Procedure
      • 1.  Petition
        • a.  Probate Code Requirements  21.16
        • b.  Requirements in Local Rules  21.17
        • c.  Form: Petition for Authority to Borrow Money and Execute Security Instrument  21.18
      • 2.  Notice  21.19
      • 3.  Hearing and Order  21.20
      • 4.  Form: Order Authorizing Representative to Borrow Money and to Execute Security Instrument  21.21
      • 5.  Execution of Instruments  21.22
    • D.  Effect of Court Order
      • 1.  Order Appealable  21.23
      • 2.  Rights of Secured Lenders  21.24
      • 3.  Rights of Unsecured Lenders  21.25
      • 4.  Liability of Personal Representative  21.26
      • 5.  Distribution Subject to Encumbrance  21.27

22

Options and Leases

Richard A. Gorini

Alex R. Borden

  • I.  TESTAMENTARY OPTION TO PURCHASE
    • A.  Time Limits on Exercise of Option  22.1
    • B.  Procedure for Transfer or Conveyance  22.2
    • C.  Restrictions on Exercise of Option Under Independent Administration of Estates Act (IAEA)  22.3
    • D.  Right of First Refusal  22.3A
    • E.  Procedure
      • 1.  Petition  22.4
      • 2.  Notice of Hearing  22.4A
      • 3.  Form: Petition by Beneficiary of Testamentary Option for Order Authorizing and Directing Sale of Estate Property to Petitioner  22.5
      • 4.  Order Directing Transfer or Conveyance  22.6
      • 5.  Form: Order Authorizing and Directing Representative to Sell Estate Property to Beneficiary of Testamentary Option  22.7
  • II.  GRANT OF OPTION TO BUY ESTATE REAL PROPERTY
    • A.  Authority Under IAEA  22.8
    • B.  Authority Under Prob C §§9960–9966  22.9
    • C.  Procedure
      • 1.  Petition
        • a.  Required Contents  22.10
        • b.  Minimum Purchase Price  22.11
        • c.  Form: Petition for Order Authorizing and Directing Representative to Grant Option to Buy Estate Real Property  22.12
      • 2.  Notice of Hearing  22.13
      • 3.  Required Findings  22.14
      • 4.  Order
        • a.  Order Authorizing Personal Representative to Grant Option  22.15
        • b.  Form: Order Authorizing and Directing Representative to Grant Option to Buy Estate Real Property  22.16
    • D.  Expiration of Option; Options Beyond Close of Administration  22.17
  • III.  LEASES
    • A.  Introduction  22.18
    • B.  Authority to Lease
      • 1.  Fiduciary Duties Apply  22.19
      • 2.  Special Administrator  22.20
      • 3.  Personal Representative
        • a.  Testamentary Power  22.21
        • b.  Leases Not Requiring Court Authorization
          • (1)  Limited Duration or Month-to-Month Leases  22.22
          • (2)  Personal Representative With Independent Powers  22.23
        • c.  Leases Requiring Court Authorization  22.24
        • d.  Renewal or Modification of Lease Made by Decedent  22.25
      • 4.  Practical Considerations
        • a.  Determining Whether to Lease
          • (1)  Leasing Versus Selling  22.26
          • (2)  Tax Factors  22.27
        • b.  Determining Terms of Lease  22.28
    • C.  Obtaining Court Authorization
      • 1.  Petition
        • a.  Requirements  22.29
        • b.  Form: Petition for Order Authorizing Lease of Real Property  22.30
      • 2.  Notice  22.31
      • 3.  Hearing and Order  22.32
        • a.  Terms and Conditions of Court-Ordered Leases
          • (1)  Provisions Under Prob C §9946  22.33
          • (2)  Duration of Lease  22.34
        • b.  Form: Order Authorizing and Directing Lease of Real Property  22.35
        • c.  Form: Lease Under Authority of Order  22.36
      • 4.  Conclusiveness of Order  22.37

23

Handling a Decedent’s Business Interests

Jonathan L. Rosenbloom

Sean R. Kenney

  • I.  INTRODUCTION  23.1
  • II.  ETHICAL ISSUES
    • A.  Attorney’s Potential Conflict of Interest  23.2
      • 1.  Required Written Consent
        • a.  Only From Current Client or Former Client  23.3
        • b.  From Multiple Clients  23.4
      • 2.  Required Disclosure  23.5
        • a.  Scope of Disclosure  23.6
        • b.  Disclosure Terms  23.7
      • 3.  Form: Potential Conflicts Disclosure and Waiver for Personal Representative and Family Member Beneficiary  23.8
    • B.  Personal Representative’s Potential Conflict of Interest  23.9
      • 1.  Representative Should Avoid Conflict Issues  23.10
      • 2.  Disqualification for Conflicts of Interest  23.11
  • III.  INITIAL DECISIONS AND RESPONSIBILITIES
    • A.  Consider Duty to Preserve Value of Business  23.12
    • B.  Decide Whether to Continue Business  23.13
    • C.  Check License Requirements  23.14
    • D.  Obtain Insurance  23.15
    • E.  Find Evidence of Decedent’s Intent for Disposition of Business
      • 1.  Examine Will or Letter of Instruction  23.16
      • 2.  Examine Internal Business Documents  23.17
    • F.  File Fictitious Business Name  23.18
    • G.  Review Franchise Agreement  23.19
    • H.  Determine if Probate Is Necessary  23.20
    • I.  Assess Property for Hazardous Waste Contamination  23.21
    • J.  Consider Need for Special Administrator  23.22
    • K.  Arrange for Appraisals  23.23
  • IV.  HANDLING DIFFERENT TYPES OF BUSINESSES
    • A.  Authority to Continue Business
      • 1.  Authority in Will  23.24
      • 2.  If Representative Has IAEA Powers
        • a.  Authority Without Court Supervision  23.25
        • b.  Notice Required 6 Months After Letters Issued  23.26
        • c.  Actions That Require Court Authorization  23.27
      • 3.  If Representative Lacks IAEA Powers  23.28
      • 4.  Effect of Operating Business Without Court Authority  23.29
    • B.  Sole Proprietorship  23.30
      • 1.  Court Approval Required After 6 Months  23.31
      • 2.  Petition for Authority to Continue or Discontinue Business  23.32
        • a.  Required Showing for Petition  23.33
        • b.  Contents of Petition  23.34
        • c.  Form: Petition to Authorize Continuation of Business or to Direct Discontinuance of Business  23.35
        • d.  Form: Order Authorizing Continuation of Business or Directing Discontinuance of Business  23.36
    • C.  Partnerships  23.37
      • 1.  Partnership Agreement Governs  23.38
      • 2.  General Partnership  23.39
        • a.  Governing Law  23.40
        • b.  Relevant Documents  23.41
        • c.  Effect of Death of Partner  23.42
        • d.  Value of Deceased Partner’s Interest  23.43
        • e.  Personal Representative’s Rights  23.44
      • 3.  Limited Partnership  23.45
        • a.  Governing Law  23.46
        • b.  Relevant Documents  23.47
          • (1)  Making Documents Available for Inspection  23.48
          • (2)  Keeping Information Confidential  23.49
        • c.  Effect of Death of Partner
          • (1)  General Partner  23.50
            • (a)  Partnerships Under ULPA [Deleted]  23.51
            • (b)  Partnerships Under CRLPA [Deleted]  23.52
          • (2)  Limited Partner  23.53
        • d.  Personal Representative’s Rights  23.54
      • 4.  Limited Liability Partnership  23.55
        • a.  Only Certain Professions Allowed  23.56
        • b.  Governing Law  23.57
        • c.  Relevant Documents  23.58
        • d.  Effect of Death of Limited Liability Partner; Valuing Partnership Interest  23.59
      • 5.  Personal Representative’s Authority to Continue as Partner  23.60
        • a.  Court Order Required  23.61
        • b.  Personal Representative’s Authority to Act as Limited Partner for Purpose of Settling Estate  23.62
        • c.  Form: Petition for Authority for Personal Representative to Serve as Partner in Decedent’s Partnership  23.63
        • d.  Form: Order Authorizing Personal Representative to Serve as Partner in Decedent’s Partnership  23.64
    • D.  Limited Liability Companies (LLCs)  23.65
      • 1.  LLC Governing Law Changes  23.65A
      • 2.  Relevant Documents  23.66
      • 3.  Nature of LLC Interest  23.67
        • a.  Membership Interest  23.68
        • b.  Transferable Interests and Transferees  23.69
        • c.  Right to Information  23.69A
      • 4.  Effect of LLC Member’s Death: Dissociation  23.70
      • 5.  Personal Representative’s Rights  23.71
    • E.  Closely Held Corporate Interests  23.72
      • 1.  Relevant Documents  23.73
      • 2.  Personal Representative’s Role  23.74
    • F.  Professional Practices
      • 1.  Special Considerations  23.75
      • 2.  Professional Corporations  23.76
      • 3.  Handling a Deceased Attorney’s Practice  23.77
        • a.  Personal Representative’s Responsibilities  23.78
        • b.  Appointment of Practice Administrator  23.79
        • c.  Contents of Petition for Appointment of Practice Administrator  23.80
        • d.  Notice of Petition  23.81
        • e.  Powers and Duties of Practice Administrator  23.82
        • f.  Compensation and Discharge of Practice Administrator  23.83
        • g.  State Bar May Take Over Practice Succession  23.84
        • h.  Checklist for Law Firm Practice Administrator  23.85
        • i.  Form: Ex Parte Petition for Appointment of Practice Administrator  23.86
        • j.  Form: Order Appointing Practice Administrator  23.87
  • V.  ISSUES WHEN OPERATING BUSINESS  23.88
    • A.  Representative’s Standard of Care  23.89
    • B.  Attorney-Client Privileged Communications  23.90
    • C.  Personal Representative’s Liability
      • 1.  Torts During Operation of Business  23.91
      • 2.  Business Debts  23.92
    • D.  Accounting Requirement  23.93
  • VI.  DISPOSING OF BUSINESS INTERESTS  23.94
    • A.  Buy-Sell Agreement  23.95
      • 1.  Specific Performance of Agreement  23.96
        • a.  Requirements for Specific Performance  23.97
        • b.  Defenses to Specific Performance  23.98
      • 2.  Obtaining Court Approval  23.99
      • 3.  Form: Petition for Authority to Transfer Business Interest Subject to Agreement  23.100
      • 4.  Form: Order Authorizing Transfer of Business Interest Subject to Agreement  23.101
    • B.  No Buy-Sell Agreement  23.102

24

Accounts

Paige T. Eldredge

Janet Kahn

Ruth A. Phelps

  • I.  RECORDKEEPING TO FACILITATE PREPARATION OF ACCOUNT
    • A.  Necessity for Recordkeeping
      • 1.  Acquiring Initial Records  24.1
      • 2.  Ongoing Recordkeeping  24.2
        • a.  Form: Letter Advising Personal Representative Regarding Ongoing Recordkeeping  24.3
        • b.  Form: Sample Timesheet for Personal Representative  24.4
    • B.  Delegation of Personal Representative’s Duties to Keep and Render Accounts  24.5
      • 1.  Division of Duties and Fees  24.6
      • 2.  Qualifications of Agent  24.7
      • 3.  Acquiring Missing Bank Records if Duties Are Delegated  24.8
      • 4.  Form: Authorization to Disclose Information  24.9
    • C.  Documents and Records
      • 1.  Letters Testamentary or of Administration and Death Certificates  24.10
      • 2.  Heir and Beneficiary Information  24.11
      • 3.  Administrative Records  24.12
      • 4.  Original Bank and Brokerage Statements  24.13
    • D.  Receipt and Disbursement Ledger  24.14
      • 1.  Deposits  24.15
      • 2.  Disbursements  24.16
      • 3.  Form: Example Reconciliation to Statements  24.17
      • 4.  Allocation of Receipts and Disbursements to Principal and Income
        • a.  Applicable Law  24.18
        • b.  Chart: Allocation of Receipts and Disbursements Under California Uniform Principal and Income Act (UPAIA)  24.19
      • 5.  Form: Sample Ledger  24.20
      • 6.  Computerized Recordkeeping; Spreadsheets  24.21
    • E.  Online Banking  24.22
    • F.  Fiduciary Accounting Software Programs  24.23
    • G.  Disposing of Records  24.24
  • II.  WHEN TO ACCOUNT
    • A.  Practical Considerations  24.25
    • B.  When Account Is Required  24.26
      • 1.  Accounts on Court Order  24.27
      • 2.  Account Required After Authority Terminated  24.28
      • 3.  Account Required if Personal Representative Dies, Becomes Incapacitated, or Absconds  24.29
    • C.  If Required Account Not Filed  24.30
    • D.  When Account Not Required
      • 1.  Waiver or Satisfaction of Interest in Full  24.31
      • 2.  Who May Execute Waiver or Acknowledgment  24.32
      • 3.  File as Separate Document or Include in Petition  24.33
      • 4.  Form: Waiver of Account by Distributee  24.34
      • 5.  Form: Acknowledgment of Satisfaction of Interest by Distributee  24.35
  • III.  PREPARING ACCOUNT AND ACCOUNT SCHEDULES
    • A.  Purpose of Account and Schedules  24.36
    • B.  When Tax Compliance of Nonresident Beneficiaries Required [Deleted]  24.37
    • C.  Categorized Versus Chronological Account  24.38
    • D.  Contents and Form of Account  24.39
      • 1.  Summary of Account  24.40
      • 2.  Required Schedules  24.41
      • 3.  Additional Schedules  24.42
      • 4.  Determining Which Schedules to Include  24.43
      • 5.  Carry Value  24.44
    • E.  Preparing Summary of Account  24.45
      • 1.  Form: Sample Summary of Account  24.46
      • 2.  Form: Sample Summary of Account if Real Property Specifically Devised  24.47
      • 3.  Problems With Balancing  24.48
    • F.  Charges
      • 1.  Property on Hand at Beginning of Account Period
        • a.  Value of Property on Hand at Beginning of Account Period  24.49
        • b.  Form: Property on Hand at Beginning of Account Period  24.50
      • 2.  Additional Assets Received
        • a.  Listing Additional Assets Received  24.51
        • b.  Form: Additional Assets Received  24.52
      • 3.  Receipts  24.53
        • a.  Form: Receipts—Chronological  24.54
        • b.  Form: Receipts—Categorized  24.55
        • c.  Schedule Showing Allocation of Receipt Between Income and Principal  24.56
        • d.  Form: Receipts When All or Part of the Estate to Be Distributed to an Income Beneficiary  24.57
      • 4.  Gains on Sales or Other Dispositions
        • a.  Listing Gains on Sales or Other Dispositions  24.58
        • b.  Form: Gains on Sales or Other Dispositions  24.59
      • 5.  Net Income (or Loss) From Trade or Business
        • a.  Accounting Principles  24.60
        • b.  Form: Net Income From Trade or Business (Rental Property)  24.61
        • c.  Form: Net Income From Trade or Business (Business)  24.62
      • 6.  Disbursements
        • a.  In General  24.63
        • b.  Form: Disbursements—Chronological Account  24.64
        • c.  Form: Disbursements—Categorized Account  24.65
        • d.  Allocations Between Principal and Income When All or Part of Estate to Be Distributed to Income Beneficiary  24.66
          • (1)  Typical Principal and Income Disbursements  24.67
          • (2)  Treatment of Real Property Taxes  24.68
          • (3)  Form: Disbursements When All or Part of Estate to Be Distributed to Income Beneficiary  24.69
      • 7.  Losses on Sales or Other Dispositions
        • a.  Listing Losses on Sales or Other Dispositions  24.70
        • b.  Form: Losses on Sales or Other Dispositions  24.71
      • 8.  Distributions
        • a.  Cash, Assets, and Specific Bequests  24.72
        • b.  Form: Distributions  24.73
      • 9.  Other Credits
        • a.  Listing Other Credits  24.74
        • b.  Form: Other Credits  24.75
      • 10.  Property on Hand at Close of Account Period
        • a.  Listing Property on Hand at Close of Account Period  24.76
        • b.  Common Errors in Preparation of Property on Hand Schedule  24.77
        • c.  Form: Property on Hand at Close of Account Period  24.78
    • G.  Additional Schedules Required; Informational Schedules  24.79
      • 1.  Changes in Form of Assets  24.80
        • a.  Form: Purchases—Reinvested Dividends and Capital Gains Distributions  24.81
        • b.  Form: Stock Splits  24.82
        • c.  Form: Spin-Offs and Stock Distributions  24.83
        • d.  Form: Return on Principal  24.84
      • 2.  Liabilities  24.85
      • 3.  Proposed Distribution  24.86

25

Preliminary Distributions

Fatima Brunson Evans

Ruth A. Phelps

  • I.  NATURE OF PROCEEDING AND WHEN TO USE IT  25.1
    • A.  Distinguished From Other Actions
      • 1.  Petition to Determine Heirship  25.2
      • 2.  Request for Family Allowance  25.3
      • 3.  Petition Under Prob C §850  25.4
    • B.  Preliminary Distribution in California Ancillary Proceeding  25.5
    • C.  Deciding Whether to Petition
      • 1.  Factors to Consider
        • a.  Policy Favoring Early Distribution  25.6
        • b.  Reasons for Making Preliminary Distributions  25.7
        • c.  Tax Considerations
          • (1)  Income Tax Issues  25.8
          • (2)  Fixing Alternate Valuation Date  25.9
        • d.  Usefulness of Establishing Testamentary Trust in Order to Modify It  25.10
        • e.  Effect of Concurrent Litigation  25.11
        • f.  Costs of Petition and Bond  25.12
      • 2.  Balancing Factors  25.13
  • II.  PROCEEDINGS FOR PRELIMINARY DISTRIBUTION
    • A.  Types of Proceedings for Preliminary Distribution
      • 1.  Summary of Statutory Bases for Preliminary Distribution  25.14
      • 2.  Chart: Comparison of Petitions for Preliminary Distribution Under Prob C §§11620 and 11623  25.15
    • B.  Preliminary Distribution Under IAEA
      • 1.  With Notice of Proposed Action Under Prob C §10520  25.16
      • 2.  By Petition Under Prob C §11623  25.17
        • a.  Who May Petition; Time for Filing  25.18
        • b.  Distributee’s Bond  25.19
        • c.  Amount to Be Distributed  25.20
        • d.  Inventory and Appraisal  25.21
        • e.  Whether to Include an Account  25.22
        • f.  Costs for Petition for Preliminary Distribution  25.23
    • C.  Preliminary Distribution Under Prob C §11620
      • 1.  Who May Petition; Time for Filing  25.24
      • 2.  Distributee’s Bond  25.25
      • 3.  Allowable Amounts of Distribution  25.26
      • 4.  Inventory and Appraisal  25.27
      • 5.  Whether to Include an Account  25.28
      • 6.  Costs of Petition for Preliminary Distribution  25.29
    • D.  Procedural Checklist  25.30
    • E.  Petition
      • 1.  Importance of Following Local Rules of Court  25.31
      • 2.  California Rules of Court 7.250 Requirements  25.32
      • 3.  California Rules of Court 7.651 Requirements  25.33
      • 4.  California Rules of Court 7.652 Requirements  25.34
      • 5.  Inclusion in Petition of Confirmation of Previous Unauthorized Distribution  25.35
      • 6.  Supporting Documents  25.36
        • a.  Inventory and Appraisal  25.37
        • b.  Account  25.38
        • c.  Form: Trustee’s Declaration Consenting to Act  25.39
      • 7.  Forms for Petition for Preliminary Distribution
        • a.  Form: Title and Introductory Paragraphs  25.40
        • b.  Form: Compliance With Notice Requirements  25.41
        • c.  Form: Inventory and Appraisal  25.42
        • d.  Form: Character of Estate Property  25.43
        • e.  Form: Election by Surviving Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner to Subject Property to Administration  25.44
        • f.  Form: Actions Taken Under Independent Administration of Estates Act (IAEA)  25.45
        • g.  Form: Debts Paid Without Creditors’ Claims  25.46
        • h.  Form: Creditors’ Claims  25.47
        • i.  Form: Estate Taxes  25.48
        • j.  Form: Provisions for Payment of Estate Taxes  25.49
        • k.  Form: Income Taxes  25.50
        • l.  Form: Certificate of California Franchise Tax Board [Deleted]  25.51
        • m.  Personal Property Taxes  25.52
        • n.  Form: Personal Property Taxes  25.53
        • o.  Form: Names and Residences of Heirs and Beneficiaries  25.54
        • p.  Form: Allegation Regarding Prior Distributions  25.55
        • q.  Form: Description of Property to Be Distributed  25.56
        • r.  Proposed Distribution  25.57
        • s.  Form: Proposed Distribution  25.58
        • t.  Form: Propriety of Proposed Distribution  25.59
        • u.  Form: Compliance With 50 Percent Limitation of Prob C §11623  25.60
        • v.  Assignment of Beneficiary’s Interest  25.61
        • w.  Form: Requirement of Bond for Distributees  25.62
        • x.  Form: Allowance on Account of Compensation  25.63
        • y.  Form: Request for Order  25.64
    • F.  Notice Requirements
      • 1.  Petition Under Prob C §11620  25.65
      • 2.  Petition Under Prob C §11623  25.66
    • G.  Challenging Petition
      • 1.  Who May Object
        • a.  Interested Persons  25.67
        • b.  Personal Representative  25.68
      • 2.  Procedural Requirements  25.69
    • H.  The Order
      • 1.  Required Findings; Entry of Order  25.70
      • 2.  Other Provisions to Be Included in the Order  25.71
      • 3.  Importance of Following Local Rules of Court  25.72
      • 4.  Form: Order Granting Preliminary Distribution
        • a.  Form: Caption and Introduction  25.73
        • b.  Findings
          • (1)  Form: Notice  25.74
          • (2)  Form: Petition True  25.75
          • (3)  Form: Date of Death and Domicile  25.76
          • (4)  Form: Appointment and Qualification of Representative  25.77
          • (5)  Form: Authority Under Independent Administration of Estates Act  25.78
          • (6)  Form: Passage of Time Since Issuance of Letters  25.79
          • (7)  Form: Inventory and Appraisal  25.80
          • (8)  Form: Character of Estate Property  25.81
          • (9)  Form: Election by Surviving Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner to Subject Property to Administration  25.82
          • (10)  Form: Disposition of Creditors’ Claims  25.83
          • (11)  Form: Payment of Debts and Expenses  25.84
          • (12)  Form: Estate Taxes  25.85
          • (13)  Form: Payment of State and Federal Income Taxes  25.86
          • (14)  Form: Certificate of California Franchise Tax Board [Deleted]   25.87
          • (15)  Form: Personal Property Taxes  25.88
          • (16)  Form: Allegation Regarding Financial Status of Estate  25.89
          • (17)  Form: Propriety of Distribution  25.90
          • (18)  Form: Compliance With 50 Percent Limitation of Prob C §11623  25.91
          • (19)  Form: Requirement of Distributee’s Bond  25.92
        • c.  Form: Order  25.93
    • I.  Receipt on Distribution
      • 1.  Contents  25.94
      • 2.  Form: Receipt of Distributee  25.95
    • J.  Recording Order  25.96
    • K.  Finality of Order
      • 1.  Appeal  25.97
      • 2.  Effect of Order When It Becomes Final  25.98
      • 3.  Setting Aside an Order; Release of Personal Representative From Claims  25.99

26

Will Contests and the Role of the Estate Planner

Marc L. Sallus

  • I.  INTRODUCTION
    • A.  Nature of Proceeding  26.1
    • B.  Attorneys and Parties  26.2
    • C.  Court Policy in Will Contests  26.3
    • D.  Tax Consequences  26.4
  • II.  LEGAL REQUIREMENTS  26.5
    • A.  Standing to Contest  26.6
      • 1.  Personal Representative
        • a.  Proposed Executor Under Will Offered for Probate  26.7
        • b.  Contest of Subsequent Will  26.8
      • 2.  Heirs  26.9
      • 3.  Beneficiaries Under Prior or Later Will  26.10
      • 4.  Estate of Person Interested  26.11
      • 5.  Assignment of Right to Contest  26.12
      • 6.  Creditors of Heirs  26.13
      • 7.  Debtors of Estate  26.14
      • 8.  State of California  26.15
      • 9.  Public Administrator  26.16
    • B.  Limitation on Right to Revoke Probate  26.17
    • C.  Methods of Contest; Statute of Limitations  26.18
      • 1.  Exception: No Jurisdiction  26.19
      • 2.  Exception: Fraud  26.20
      • 3.  Exception: Probate of Another Will  26.21
    • D.  Advantages of Preprobate Versus Postprobate Contests  26.22
    • E.  Grounds for Direct Contest; Burden of Proof  26.23
      • 1.  Due Execution  26.24
        • a.  Burden of Proof
          • (1)  Before Probate  26.25
          • (2)  After Will Admitted to Probate  26.26
        • b.  Proof of Due Execution  26.27
      • 2.  Lack of Testamentary Intent  26.28
      • 3.  Testamentary Capacity
        • a.  Presumption and Burden of Proof; Due Process in Competence Determinations Act  26.29
        • b.  Evidence Regarding Capacity  26.30
      • 4.  Undue Influence  26.31
      • 5.  Fraud, Menace, or Duress  26.32
      • 6.  Mistake  26.33
      • 7.  Revocation  26.34
        • a.  Presumptions  26.35
        • b.  Revocation of Codicil  26.36
        • c.  Dependent Relative Revocation  26.37
      • 8.  Gifts to “Disqualified Persons”
        • a.  Disqualified Persons  26.38
        • b.  Effect of Failed Transfer  26.39
        • c.  Exceptions to Definition of Disqualified Persons  26.40
        • d.  Will Contest or Action Based on Invalidity of Transfer Described in Prob C §21380
          • (1)  When Action Not Limited to Invalidity of Transfer to Disqualified Person  26.41
          • (2)  Action Limited to Invalidity of Transfer to Disqualified Person  26.42
    • F.  No-Contest Clauses  26.43
    • G.  Other Remedies
      • 1.  Actions Without Contest  26.44
      • 2.  Declaratory Relief Actions  26.45
  • III.  ECONOMICS OF CONTESTS
    • A.  Reality of High Cost  26.46
    • B.  Compensation of Attorney
      • 1.  General Rule  26.47
      • 2.  Compensation of Attorney for Personal Representative  26.48
        • a.  Before Probate  26.49
        • b.  After Probate  26.50
      • 3.  Compensation of Attorney for Beneficiaries  26.51
      • 4.  Compensation of Guardian Ad Litem  26.52
    • C.  Tax Considerations
      • 1.  Importance of Planning Ahead  26.53
      • 2.  Deductibility of Attorney Fees and Costs
        • a.  Deduction of Contest Expenses by Estate  26.54
        • b.  Attorney Fees Incurred by Beneficiaries  26.55
      • 3.  Tax Consequences of Settlement  26.56
        • a.  Income Taxation of Recoveries  26.57
        • b.  Deductibility of Payments and Distributions  26.58
  • IV.  COMPROMISE AND SETTLEMENT
    • A.  Settlement Agreement  26.59
    • B.  Settlement Procedure  26.60
  • V.  ROLE OF ESTATE PLANNER IN WILL CONTESTS
    • A.  Attorney as Witness  26.61
      • 1.  Attorney-Client Privilege
        • a.  Scope and Holder of Attorney-Client Privilege  26.62
        • b.  Exceptions to Attorney-Client Privilege  26.63
      • 2.  Attorney Work Product Privilege  26.64
    • B.  Attorney’s Role in Administering Estate During Contest  26.65

27

Probate Code §850 Petitions: Title Disputes and Executory Contracts

Richard A. Gorini

  • I.  GROUNDS FOR PROB C §850 PETITION
    • A.  Title Disputes
      • 1.  When Title Can Be Tried in Probate Proceedings  27.1
      • 2.  Examples of Title Disputes That Can Be Tried in Probate Proceedings  27.2
    • B.  Decedent’s Executory Contracts
      • 1.  When Decedent’s Executory Contracts Can Be Tried in Probate Proceedings  27.3
      • 2.  Requirements for Specific Performance  27.4
    • C.  Related Claims  27.5
  • II.  GENERAL CONSIDERATIONS
    • A.  Concurrent Jurisdiction  27.6
    • B.  Statute of Limitations  27.7
    • C.  Impact of No-Contest Clause  27.8
    • D.  No Right to Jury Trial  27.9
    • E.  Bad Faith Double Damages  27.9A
  • III.  PROCEDURE FOR PROB C §850 PETITION
    • A.  Preparing Petition  27.10
      • 1.  Who May File Petition  27.11
      • 2.  Petitions to Determine Title to Estate Property
        • a.  Form: Petition by Personal Representative to Establish Estate’s Ownership of Property  27.12
        • b.  Form: Petition by Personal Representative to Determine Ownership of Estate Property  27.13
        • c.  Form: Petition by Third Party Claimant to Determine Ownership of Estate Property  27.14
      • 3.  Petitions for Specific Performance of Executory Contract
        • a.  Form: Petition by Personal Representative for Specific Performance of Executory Contract for Sale of Property  27.15
        • b.  Form: Petition by Purchaser for Specific Performance of Executory Contract of Sale for Property  27.16
    • B.  Obtaining Hearing Date  27.17
    • C.  Notice of Hearing  27.18
    • D.  Lis Pendens  27.19
    • E.  Summary Determination  27.20
    • F.  Opposition to Petition  27.21
      • 1.  Objections to Hearing Petition
        • a.  Venue  27.22
        • b.  Abatement  27.23
        • c.  Discretionary Dismissal or Abatement  27.24
      • 2.  Form: Objections to Personal Representative’s Petition to Determine Ownership of Estate Property  27.25
      • 3.  Time for Filing Opposition  27.26
    • G.  Discovery  27.27
    • H.  Statement of Decision  27.28
    • I.  Order and Appeal  27.29
      • 1.  Form: Order Determining Ownership of Estate Property and Transferring Property to Claimant  27.30
      • 2.  Form: Order Establishing Estate’s Ownership of Property and Directing Transfer  27.31
      • 3.  Form: Order for Specific Performance and Directing Conveyance of Property  27.32

28

Proceedings to Determine Entitlement to Estate Distribution

Charles P. Wolff

  • I.  OVERVIEW   28.1
  • II.  APPLICABILITY OF PROB C §11700 PROCEEDING
    • A.  Broad Scope of Statute  28.2
    • B.  Examples of Use of Prob C §11700 Proceedings  28.3
    • C.  Limits on Use of Procedure  28.4
  • III.  PETITION UNDER PROB C §11700
    • A.  Who May Petition  28.5
      • 1.  Personal Representative  28.6
      • 2.  Beneficiaries or Persons Otherwise Entitled to Distribution  28.7
      • 3.  Persons Who Do Not Have Standing to Petition  28.8
    • B.  Time for Filing  28.9
    • C.  Local Rules  28.10
    • D.  Petitioner: File Petition and Obtain Hearing Date
      • 1.  Content of Petition  28.11
      • 2.  Form: Petition for Determination of Entitlement to Estate Distribution  28.12
      • 3.  Assignment of Hearing Date  28.13
      • 4.  Service of Notice  28.14
    • E.  Respondent: File Statement of Interest in Estate
      • 1.  Who May File  28.15
      • 2.  Practical Considerations  28.16
      • 3.  Contents of Statement of Interest  28.17
      • 4.  Form: Statement of Interest  28.18
    • F.  Hearing: Overview  28.19
      • 1.  When to Seek Evidentiary Hearing: Strategic Considerations  28.20
      • 2.  Evidence: Rules of Civil Procedure Apply  28.21
  • IV.  PROVING CLAIMS UNDER PROB C §11700  28.22
    • A.  Litigating Entitlement Claim Based on Will  28.23
      • 1.  Testator’s Words Versus Testator’s Intent  28.24
      • 2.  Statutory Rules of Construction of Language in Instrument  28.25
        • a.  Relatives of the Half Blood and Adoptees  28.26
        • b.  Exoneration; Ademption  28.27
      • 3.  Some Applicable Rules of Evidence  28.28
      • 4.  Proceedings in Absence of Extrinsic Evidence  28.29
      • 5.  Extrinsic Evidence
        • a.  Introduction of Extrinsic Evidence  28.30
        • b.  Issues on Which Extrinsic Evidence Has Been Admitted  28.31
    • B.  Litigating Entitlement Claim Not Based on Will  28.32
      • 1.  Intestacy Rights of Heirs of Predeceased Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner  28.33
      • 2.  Intestacy Rights of Omitted Spouse, Registered Domestic Partner, or Child  28.34
      • 3.  Intestacy Rights of Remote Relatives  28.34A
      • 4.  Proof of Issues
        • a.  Issues Involving Relationship to Decedent or Predeceased Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner
          • (1)  Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner  28.35
          • (2)  Putative Spouse
            • (a)  Extent of Rights  28.36
            • (b)  Issues of Proof  28.37
          • (3)  Effect of Annulment, Dissolution, Separation, or Termination of Domestic Partnership  28.38
          • (4)  Child  28.39
            • (a)  Maternity  28.40
            • (b)  Paternity  28.41
            • (c)  Posthumous Conception  28.42
          • (5)  Adoptee  28.43
        • b.  Issues Involving Characterization of Property at Issue  28.44
  • V.  ORDER DETERMINING ENTITLEMENT
    • A.  Order  28.45
    • B.  Effect of Order  28.46
    • C.  Form: Order Determining Entitlement to Estate Distribution  28.47
  • VI.  ATTORNEY FEES AND COSTS  28.48
  • VII.  CHALLENGING ORDER
    • A.  Appeal  28.49
    • B.  Relief Based on Mistake, Inadvertence, Surprise, or Excusable Neglect  28.50
    • C.  Relief Based on Extrinsic Fraud  28.51

29

Actions By and Against Personal Representative

Mary F. Gillick

Leonard W. Pollard II

  • I.  GENERAL PRINCIPLES
    • A.  Estate Cannot Sue or Be Sued  29.1
    • B.  Personal Representative as Plaintiff or Defendant  29.2
      • 1.  Conflicts of Interest  29.3
      • 2.  Duty of Impartiality  29.4
    • C.  Survival of Actions By or Against Estate  29.5
    • D.  Prior Court Approval to Engage in Litigation  29.6
      • 1.  Protection Against Hindsight Complaints  29.7
      • 2.  Payment of Attorney Fees and Costs on Current Basis  29.8
    • E.  Evidentiary Issues
      • 1.  Discovery  29.9
        • a.  Discovery Involving Predecessor Fiduciary—Confidential Attorney-Client Communications  29.10
        • b.  Attorney Work Product Protection Regarding Predecessor Cofiduciary  29.11
      • 2.  Hearsay Rules and Exceptions  29.12
        • a.  State of Mind
          • (1)  Then-Existing State of Mind (Evid C §1250)  29.13
          • (2)  Previously Existing State of Mind (Evid C §1251)  29.14
        • b.  No Attorney-Client Privilege (Evid C §§957, 960–961)  29.15
        • c.  Decedent’s Declarations Concerning Will (Evid C §1260)  29.16
        • d.  Decedent’s Statements in Action Against Estate (Evid C §1261)  29.17
        • e.  Evidence of Family History
          • (1)  Decedent’s Statement Concerning Own Family History (Evid C §1310)  29.18
          • (2)  Decedent’s Statement Concerning Family History of Another (Evid C §1311)  29.19
          • (3)  Entries in Family Bible, Church Records, Marriage, Baptismal, and Similar Certificates (Evid C §§1312, 1315–1316)  29.20
          • (4)  Reputation Concerning Family History (Evid C §§1313–1314)  29.21
        • f.  Other Exceptions to Hearsay Rule  29.22
    • F.  Settlement
      • 1.  Obtaining Court Approval  29.23
      • 2.  Statutory Enforcement of Settlement  29.24
    • G.  Attorney Fees
      • 1.  Attorney for Personal Representative  29.25
      • 2.  When Beneficiaries Fund Litigation  29.26
    • H.  Appeal  29.27
  • II.  ACTIONS BY PERSONAL REPRESENTATIVE
    • A.  Survival of Actions  29.28
    • B.  Standing to Pursue Claim
      • 1.  Personal Representative  29.29
      • 2.  When Successor in Interest May Commence Action  29.30
      • 3.  Successor Personal Representative May Sue Predecessor’s Agents  29.31
    • C.  Damages
      • 1.  Decedent’s Damages in Survival Action  29.32
      • 2.  Limitation on Damages  29.33
    • D.  Statutes of Limitation  29.34
    • E.  Venue
      • 1.  Venue in Suits by Personal Representative  29.35
      • 2.  Foreign Personal Representatives  29.36
    • F.  Specific Actions
      • 1.  Wrongful Death Actions  29.37
        • a.  Persons With Standing  29.38
          • (1)  Personal Representative  29.39
          • (2)  Putative Spouse  29.40
          • (3)  Domestic Partner  29.41
          • (4)  Child  29.42
            • (a)  Child Born Out of Wedlock  29.43
            • (b)  Child of Parent Whose Rights Were Terminated  29.44
          • (5)  Parent  29.45
        • b.  Persons Without Standing
          • (1)  Decedent’s Killer  29.46
          • (2)  Decedent’s Abuser  29.47
        • c.  Joinder of Claims and Claimants  29.48
          • (1)  Bringing “Single Joint Indivisible Action”  29.49
          • (2)  Sharing in Judgment or Settlement  29.50
        • d.  Statute of Limitations  29.51
          • (1)  Wrongful Death Actions  29.52
          • (2)  Actions Against Defendant Based on Commission of Felony for Which He or She Was Convicted  29.53
          • (3)  Actions for Wrongful Death Based on Medical Malpractice  29.54
        • e.  Distinction Between Wrongful Death Action and Survival Action  29.55
          • (1)  Recovering Survivor’s Damages  29.56
        • f.  Death of Minor  29.57
      • 2.  Marital and Domestic Partnership Proceedings
        • a.  Same-Sex Marriage  29.57A
        • b.  Proceedings Court May Retain Jurisdiction Over  29.58
        • c.  Recovery of Community Property Expenditures on Separate Real Property  29.59
    • G.  Commencing or Continuing Action  29.60
      • 1.  Form: Complaint in Action by Representative or Successor in Interest  29.61
      • 2.  Form: Declaration by Successor in Interest  29.62
  • III.  CLAIMS OF THIRD PARTIES AGAINST DECEDENT
    • A.  Survival of Actions Against Decedent  29.63
    • B.  Time Limitations
      • 1.  One-Year Limitation Period (CCP §366.2)  29.64
        • a.  Tolling of Statute  29.65
        • b.  Equitable Estoppel  29.66
        • c.  Actions Against Decedent Covered by Liability Insurance  29.67
      • 2.  Claims Based on Decedent’s Promise to Make Postdeath Gift (CCP §366.3)  29.68
    • C.  Conditions Precedent to Suit
      • 1.  Creditor’s Claim  29.69
      • 2.  Substituting Personal Representative as Defendant in Pending Action  29.70
      • 3.  Form: Notice of Motion and Motion for Order Substituting Personal Representative as Defendant and for Leave to File Supplemental Complaint  29.71
    • D.  Filing Action on Rejected Claim
      • 1.  Period for Filing Action on Rejected Claim  29.72
      • 2.  Pleadings in Action Against Estate  29.73
    • E.  Venue in Suits Against Personal Representative  29.74
    • F.  Notice of Pendency of Action  29.75
    • G.  Decedent’s Promise to Will Property  29.76
      • 1.  Statute of Frauds  29.77
        • a.  Contracts Made After December 31, 1984, and Before January 1, 2000  29.78
        • b.  Contracts Made Before January 1, 1985  29.79
      • 2.  Enforcement by Third Party Beneficiaries  29.80
      • 3.  Action at Law Versus Action in Equity  29.81
        • a.  Action in Equity  29.82
          • (1)  Cases in Which Monetary Compensation Is Inadequate  29.83
          • (2)  Cases in Which Monetary Compensation Is Adequate  29.84
        • b.  Personal Service Contracts: Action in Quantum Meruit  29.85
      • 4.  Effect of Equitable Action on Probate Proceedings  29.86
    • H.  Judgment in Action at Law Against Estate Representative  29.87
    • I.  Collection of Judgments Against Decedent  29.87A
  • IV.  ACTIONS AND PROCEEDINGS AGAINST PERSONAL REPRESENTATIVE
    • A.  Representative’s Personal Liability
      • 1.  Representative as Fiduciary  29.88
        • a.  Fiduciary Duty to Beneficiaries  29.89
        • b.  Duty of Professional Fiduciary  29.90
      • 2.  Extrinsic Fraud by Fiduciary  29.91
      • 3.  Corepresentatives’ Liability  29.92
      • 4.  Liability for Self-Dealing  29.93
      • 5.  Liability for Nonpayment of Creditors’ Claims and Failure to Distribute Estate According to Decree  29.94
      • 6.  Tax Liability  29.95
        • a.  Federal Taxes
          • (1)  Duty to File Return  29.96
          • (2)  Liability for Payment of Taxes  29.97
        • b.  California Taxes  29.98
      • 7.  Environmental Liability  29.99
        • a.  Safe Harbors for Fiduciaries  29.100
        • b.  Protecting Personal Representative  29.101
      • 8.  Contract Liability; Enforceability of Personal Representative’s Promise Personally to Pay  29.102
      • 9.  Personal Representative’s Tort Liability  29.103
      • 10.  Personal Liability for Attorney Fees  29.104
    • B.  Compelling Account
      • 1.  Representative’s Duty to Account  29.105
      • 2.  Court-Ordered Account  29.106
      • 3.  Waiver of Account  29.107
      • 4.  Procedure to Compel Account  29.108
        • a.  Form: Petition for Order Compelling Personal Representative or Other Named Person to Account  29.109
        • b.  Form: Order Compelling Personal Representative or Other Named Person to Account  29.110
      • 5.  Remedies if Personal Representative Fails to Comply With Order Compelling Personal Representative to Account  29.111
        • a.  Form: Petition for Issuance of Citation Requiring Personal Representative to Appear and Show Cause Why He or She Should Not Be Punished for Contempt  29.112
        • b.  Form: Citation—Probate (Judicial Council Form DE-122/GC-322)  29.113
        • c.  Failure to Appear and Account  29.114
      • 6.  Objections to Account
        • a.  Standing to Object  29.115
        • b.  Scope of Hearing  29.116
        • c.  Evidence  29.117
    • C.  Surcharge of Personal Representative
      • 1.  Breach of Fiduciary Duty  29.118
      • 2.  Actions That Are Not Breach of Fiduciary Duty  29.119
      • 3.  Measure of Liability for Breach of Fiduciary Duty
        • a.  Compensatory Damages  29.120
        • b.  Interest  29.120A
        • c.  Punitive Damages  29.121
      • 4.  Court Review and Limitations on Res Judicata  29.122
      • 5.  Surcharge Procedure
        • a.  Who May Object  29.123
        • b.  Content and Format of Objections  29.124
        • c.  Form: Objections to Account and Request for Surcharge of Personal Representative and Other Remedies  29.125
    • D.  Removal of Personal Representative
      • 1.  Statutory Grounds for Removal  29.126
      • 2.  Discretionary Removal Power  29.127
      • 3.  Procedure for Removal  29.128
      • 4.  Suspension of Personal Representative’s Powers  29.129
        • a.  Form: Petition for Removal of Representative  29.130
        • b.  Form: Order for Issuance of Citation  29.131
        • c.  Form: Order Removing Representative  29.132
    • E.  Attorney Fee Shifting
      • 1.  Fees Incurred by Fiduciary  29.133
      • 2.  Fees Incurred by Contestant  29.134
    • F.  Appeal  29.135
    • G.  Requiring Further Bond
      • 1.  Grounds for Requiring Further Bond  29.136
      • 2.  Procedure for Requiring Further Bond
        • a.  Form: Notice of Motion Objecting to Bond  29.137
        • b.  Notice of Hearing on Bond  29.138
        • c.  Form: Order Requiring Further Bond  29.139
        • d.  Action Against Bond  29.140

30

Compensation and Fees

Cynthia V. Roehl

  • I.  AWARD OF COMPENSATION IN PROBATE ESTATES   30.1
    • A.  Retainer Agreement Between Personal Representative and Attorney  30.2
      • 1.  Written Agreement Not Required  30.3
      • 2.  Form: Retainer Agreement Between Personal Representative and Attorney  30.4
    • B.  Fees for Out-of-State Personal Representatives and Attorneys  30.5
    • C.  Priority of Compensation  30.6
  • II.  SPECIAL SITUATIONS
    • A.  Compensation Provision in Will  30.7
      • 1.  Form: Petition by Personal Representative for Relief From Will Provision for Compensation  30.8
      • 2.  Notice of Hearing on Petition  30.9
      • 3.  Form: Order Granting Relief From Will Provision for Compensation of Personal Representative  30.10
    • B.  Waiver of Representative’s Compensation  30.11
      • 1.  Tax Considerations  30.12
      • 2.  Factors Other Than Tax Considerations  30.13
      • 3.  When to File Waiver  30.14
      • 4.  Form: Waiver of Compensation as Representative  30.15
    • C.  Compensation Agreements
      • 1.  Contract for Higher or Lower Compensation  30.16
      • 2.  Compensation to Attorney for Extraordinary Services
        • a.  Contingent Fee Basis  30.17
        • b.  Form: Petition for Authority to Enter Into Contingent Fee Agreement  30.18
        • c.  Notice  30.19
        • d.  Form: Order Authorizing Contingent Fee Agreement  30.20
      • 3.  Compensation to Attorney for Extraordinary Services on Hourly Fee Basis  30.21
    • D.  Separate Counsel for Representative in Order to Protect Attorney-Client Privilege  30.22
    • E.  Agreement for Attorney to Perform Some Duties of Personal Representative
      • 1.  Allowed by Some Counties  30.23
      • 2.  Form: Sample Agreement on Performance of and Compensation for Duties of Representative  30.24
    • F.  Dual Roles as Representative and Attorney  30.25
      • 1.  Form: Petition for Prior Approval of Dual Compensation for Services as Personal Representative and Attorney for Personal Representative  30.26
      • 2.  Notice  30.27
      • 3.  Form: Order Approving Right to Compensation as Personal Representative and for Services as Attorney for Personal Representative  30.28
    • G.  When Representative Is Partner or Shareholder in Law Firm
      • 1.  When Firm Can Receive Fees  30.29
      • 2.  Form: Agreement Not to Participate in Fees Received by Attorneys for Personal Representative  30.30
    • H.  Guardian Ad Litem Fees  30.31
  • III.  NATURE AND AMOUNT OF COMPENSATION
    • A.  Statutory Scheme of Fees for Personal Representative and Attorney  30.32
    • B.  Ordinary Compensation
      • 1.  Services Included  30.33
      • 2.  Checklist: “Ordinary” Attorney Services  30.34
      • 3.  Rate in Effect at Time of Order  30.35
      • 4.  Computing Amount of Estate Accounted For
        • a.  Estate Accounted For  30.36
        • b.  Method of Computation  30.37
        • c.  Property or Values Not Included  30.38
      • 5.  One Fee Per Estate  30.39
    • C.  Compensation for Extraordinary Services
      • 1.  What Constitutes Extraordinary Services  30.40
        • a.  Personal Representative Services  30.41
        • b.  Attorney and Paralegal Services
          • (1)  Examples of Specific Statutory Authority for Extraordinary Compensation  30.42
          • (2)  Nonexclusive List of Attorney Services in Cal Rules of Ct 7.703(c)  30.43
          • (3)  Extraordinary Services by Paralegals  30.44
        • c.  Operating Decedent’s Business  30.45
        • d.  Employment of Tax Experts  30.46
      • 2.  Determining Value of Services  30.47
      • 3.  Required Statement of Facts When Requesting Extraordinary Compensation  30.48
    • D.  Reduction of Compensation
      • 1.  Reduction Based on Delay  30.49
      • 2.  Reduction for Other Reasons  30.50
    • E.  Some Special Situations
      • 1.  Attorney Fees for Family Allowance Petitions  30.51
      • 2.  Attorney Fees in Contest of Personal Representative’s Accounting  30.52
      • 3.  Fees Requested for Petition to Determine Persons Entitled to Distribution Under Prob C §11700  30.52A
  • IV.  PETITION FOR ORDER FOR COMPENSATION
    • A.  Procedure for Claiming Allowance
      • 1.  Necessity for Petition and Order  30.53
      • 2.  Payment Without Court Order  30.54
      • 3.  Local Requirements  30.55
    • B.  Petition for Allowance on Account
      • 1.  Timing of Compensation Request  30.56
      • 2.  Payment of Ordinary Compensation on Account  30.57
      • 3.  Payment of Extraordinary Compensation Before Final Distribution  30.58
      • 4.  Division of Fees in Estates Involving Successor Personal Representatives and Successor Counsel  30.59
      • 5.  Contents of Petition  30.60
      • 6.  Form: Petition for Allowance of Compensation  30.61
      • 7.  Form: Sample Declaration in Support of Request for Fees for Extraordinary Legal Services  30.62
      • 8.  Notice  30.63
      • 9.  Form: Order for Allowance of Ordinary Compensation to Personal Representative and Ordinary and Extraordinary Fees to Attorney  30.64
  • V.  ACTIONS AFTER ORDER
    • A.  Appeal From Compensation and Expense Orders  30.65
    • B.  Representative’s Refusal to Pay Attorney  30.66
    • C.  Request for Compensation in Estates Lacking Cash for Payment  30.67
    • D.  Garnishment of Compensation and Set-Off  30.68
    • E.  Interest on Deferred Payment  30.69

31

Account, Report, and Petition for Final Distribution

Anne Bruner Nash

Rachel A. Dodson

  • I.  INTRODUCTION
    • A.  Function of Account, Report, and Petition for Final Distribution  31.1
    • B.  Review Status of Administration  31.2
    • C.  Review of State and Local Probate Rules  31.3
    • D.  Time for Filing Petition for Final Distribution or Status Report  31.4
    • E.  Personal Representative May Be Compelled to Petition for Final Distribution  31.4A
    • F.  Who May File  31.5
  • II.  STATUS REPORT
    • A.  Required Contents  31.6
    • B.  Notice and Hearing  31.7
    • C.  Petition to Compel Personal Representative [Deleted]  31.8
  • III.  ACCOUNT, REPORT, AND PETITION: OVERVIEW
    • A.  Information Always Included  31.9
    • B.  Additional Information if Petition Includes Account  31.10
    • C.  Additional Information if Account Is Waived [Deleted]  31.11
    • D.  Waiver of Account  31.12
      • 1.  Who May Execute Waiver or Acknowledgment  31.13
      • 2.  File Waiver as Separate Document or Include in Petition  31.14
      • 3.  Form: Waiver of Account by Distributee  31.15
      • 4.  Additional Information May Be Required if Account Is Waived  31.15A
  • IV.  PREPARATION OF ACCOUNT, REPORT, AND PETITION FOR FINAL DISTRIBUTION
    • A.  Title and Introductory Paragraph  31.16
      • 1.  Form: Caption and Introduction  31.17
      • 2.  Form: Date of Death and Domicile; Ancillary Administration  31.18
      • 3.  Form: Appointment of Executor or Administrator; Authority Under Independent Administration of Estates Act  31.19
    • B.  Form: Petition to Administer Estate Published  31.20
    • C.  Notice to Public Entities
      • 1.  To Whom Notice Must Be Given  31.21
      • 2.  Form: Notice to Public Entities  31.22
    • D.  Special Notice
      • 1.  Notice Must Be Given  31.23
      • 2.  Form: Special Notice  31.23A
    • E.  Form: Inventory and Appraisal  31.24
    • F.  Character of Estate Property
      • 1.  Allegation Regarding Character of Estate Property  31.25
      • 2.  Form: Character of Estate Property  31.26
    • G.  Election by Surviving Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner to Subject Property to Administration
      • 1.  Election  31.27
      • 2.  Form: Election by Surviving Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner to Subject Property to Administration  31.28
    • H.  Summary of Account or Waiver of Account
      • 1.  Summary of Account  31.29
      • 2.  Form: Summary of Account  31.30
      • 3.  Waiver of Account in Place of Summary of Account  31.31
      • 4.  Form: Allegations of Waiver of Account  31.32
    • I.  Allegations Pertaining to Account Information
      • 1.  Requirements of Prob C §1064  31.33
      • 2.  Prob C §1064 Allegations
        • a.  Form: Transactions During Account Period  31.34
        • b.  Form: Unusual Expenditures  31.35
        • c.  Form: Compensation Paid During Account Period  31.36
        • d.  Form: Family or Affiliate Relationship  31.37
        • e.  Form: Investment of Cash  31.38
        • f.  Form: Sale of Assets  31.39
        • g.  Form: Purchase, Exchange, or Change in Form of Assets  31.40
    • J.  Independent Administration of Estates Act
      • 1.  Report of Actions Under Independent Administration of Estates Act  31.41
      • 2.  Form: Actions Taken Under Independent Administration of Estates Act  31.42
    • K.  Creditors’ Claims  31.43
      • 1.  Notice to Creditors  31.44
      • 2.  Debts Paid Without Creditors’ Claims  31.45
      • 3.  Form: Debts Paid Without Creditors’ Claims  31.46
      • 4.  Reporting Creditors’ Claims  31.47
      • 5.  Form: Creditors’ Claims  31.48
    • L.  Allocation of Debts Between Estate and Surviving Spouse
      • 1.  Allocations of Debts by Court  31.48A
      • 2.  Form: Allocation of Debts  31.48B
    • M.  Estate Taxes
      • 1.  Reporting Estate Taxes  31.49
      • 2.  Form: Estate Taxes  31.50
    • N.  Income Taxes
      • 1.  Allegation Regarding Income Taxes  31.51
      • 2.  Form: Income Taxes  31.52
      • 3.  Franchise Tax Board Certificate Requirement Eliminated  31.53
      • 4.  Form: Certificate of California Franchise Tax Board [Deleted]  31.54
    • O.  Personal Property Taxes
      • 1.  Allegation Regarding Personal Property Taxes  31.55
      • 2.  Form: Personal Property Taxes  31.56
    • P.  Compensation of Personal Representative and Attorney  31.57
      • 1.  Allowance or Waiver of Statutory Compensation  31.58
      • 2.  Form: Allowance or Waiver of Statutory Compensation  31.59
      • 3.  Compensation for Extraordinary Services
        • a.  Allegations Regarding Compensation for Extraordinary Services  31.60
        • b.  Form: Request for Compensation for Extraordinary Services  31.61
    • Q.  Distribution of Estate
      • 1.  Status of Estate
        • a.  Allegation Regarding Status of Estate and Property on Hand for Distribution  31.62
        • b.  Form: Status of Estate  31.63
      • 2.  Assets on Hand
        • a.  Description of Property to Be Distributed (Cal Rules of Ct 7.651)  31.64
        • b.  Form: Assets on Hand  31.65
      • 3.  Reserve for Closing Expenses
        • a.  Allegation Regarding Reserve for Closing Expenses  31.66
        • b.  Form: Reserve for Closing Expenses  31.67
      • 4.  Names and Residences of Heirs and Beneficiaries
        • a.  Allegation Regarding Names and Residences of Heirs and Beneficiaries  31.68
        • b.  Form: Names and Residences of Heirs and Beneficiaries  31.69
      • 5.  Proposed Distribution  31.70
        • a.  Testate; Intestate Estate  31.71
        • b.  Nonprorata Distribution  31.72
        • c.  Income  31.73
        • d.  If Option Extends Beyond Administration of Estate  31.74
        • e.  Allegation Regarding Disclaimers  31.75
        • f.  Form: Proposed Distribution  31.76
        • g.  Distribution to Another Person  31.77
        • h.  Distribution to Trustee of Testamentary Trust
          • (1)  Requirements for Distribution to Trustee  31.78
          • (2)  Form: Distribution to Trustee of Testamentary Trust  31.79
        • i.  Whereabouts of Distributee Unknown
          • (1)  Handling Share of Unknown Distributee  31.80
          • (2)  Form: Whereabouts of Distributee Unknown  31.81
        • j.  Minor, Incapacitated, or Deceased Distributees
          • (1)  Gift to Minor or Incapacitated Beneficiary  31.82
          • (2)  Gift to Minor Distributee
            • (a)  Gift to Minor Not Exceeding $5000
              • (i)  Form: Gift to Minor Not Exceeding $5000  31.83
              • (ii)  Form: Written Assurance of Parent  31.83A
            • (b)  Form: Gift to Custodian for Minor  31.84
            • (c)  Form: Gift to Minor Exceeding $5000  31.85
          • (3)  Gift to Predeceased Beneficiary  31.86
          • (4)  Form: Gift to Predeceased Beneficiary  31.87
          • (5)  If Distributee Dies Before Distribution  31.88
        • k.  Other Distribution Issues
          • (1)  Abatement  31.88A
          • (2)  Form: Abatement  31.88B
          • (3)  Chart: General Gifts to Nonrelatives to Be Abated  31.88C
          • (4)  Ademption by Extinction  31.88D
          • (5)  Form: Ademption by Extinction  31.88E
        • l.  Proration of Estate Taxes
          • (1)  Allegation Regarding Proration of Estate Taxes  31.89
          • (2)  Form: Proration of Estate Taxes  31.90
        • m.  After-Discovered Assets
          • (1)  Distribution of After-Discovered Assets  31.91
          • (2)  Form: Omnibus Clause  31.92
    • R.  Form: Request for Orders  31.93
    • S.  Joinder in Request for Compensation
      • 1.  Joinder by Attorney in Request for Compensation for Extraordinary Services [Deleted]  31.94
      • 2.  Form: Joinder by Attorney in Request for Compensation for Extraordinary Services [Deleted]  31.95
    • T.  Checklist: Final Review  31.96
  • V.  NOTICE AND HEARING
    • A.  Obtaining a Hearing Date  31.97
    • B.  Notice  31.98
      • 1.  Who Must Receive Notice  31.98A
      • 2.  Manner of Giving Notice  31.98B
      • 3.  Contents of Notice  31.98C
      • 4.  Giving Notice to Ward, Conservatee, Minor, Trust Beneficiary, or Person Whose Address Is Unknown  31.99
      • 5.  Proof of Service  31.100
    • C.  Hearing  31.101
    • D.  Objections  31.102
  • VI.  ORDER SETTLING FINAL ACCOUNT AND FOR FINAL DISTRIBUTION
    • A.  Matters Covered in Order
      • 1.  Matters Required  31.103
      • 2.  Matters Recommended  31.104
    • B.  Preparing Order  31.105
    • C.  Submitting Order  31.106
    • D.  Order Settling Final Account and for Final Distribution: Long Form
      • 1.  Form: Caption and Introductory Paragraph  31.107
      • 2.  Findings
        • a.  Compliance With Notice Requirements
          • (1)  Finding Regarding Notice  31.108
          • (2)  Form: Compliance With Notice Requirements  31.109
        • b.  Account and Petition True
          • (1)  Finding Regarding Truth of Allegations  31.110
          • (2)  Form: Account and Petition True  31.111
        • c.  Date of Death and Domicile; Ancillary Administration
          • (1)  Reciting Date of Death  31.112
          • (2)  Form: Date of Death and Domicile; Ancillary Administration  31.113
        • d.  Form: Appointment and Qualification of Representative  31.114
        • e.  Form: Authority Under Independent Administration of Estates Act  31.115
        • f.  Form: Estate in Condition to Be Closed; Waiver of Account  31.116
        • g.  Form: Character of Estate Property  31.117
        • h.  Form: Election by Surviving Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner to Subject Property to Administration  31.118
        • i.  Form: Disposition of Claims  31.119
        • j.  Form: Payment of Debts and Expenses  31.120
        • k.  Form: Estate Tax  31.121
        • l.  Form: Payment of State and Federal Income Taxes  31.122
        • m.  Form: Payment of Personal Property Taxes  31.123
        • n.  Form: Closing Expenses and Distribution of Reserve  31.124
        • o.  Form: Proposed Distribution  31.125
        • p.  Compensation Allowed
          • (1)  Finding Regarding Compensation  31.126
          • (2)  Form: Compensation Allowed  31.127
      • 3.  Order
        • a.  Form: Administration of Estate Closed With/Without Waiver of Account  31.128
        • b.  Account Settled
          • (1)  Provision Settling Account  31.129
          • (2)  Form: Account Settled  31.130
        • c.  Personal Representative’s Acts Approved
          • (1)  Provision Approving Personal Representative’s Acts  31.131
          • (2)  Form: Personal Representative’s Acts Approved  31.132
        • d.  Form: Personal Representative’s Compensation  31.133
        • e.  Form: Attorney’s Compensation  31.134
        • f.  Form: Closing Expenses  31.135
        • g.  Form: Testamentary Trustee to Pay Tax Deficiencies  31.136
        • h.  Form: Surviving Spouse or Domestic Partner’s Community and Quasi-Community Property Administered in Proceeding  31.137
        • i.  Distribution Plan
          • (1)  Provision Detailing Distribution Plan  31.138
          • (2)  Form: Distribution Plan (Testate/Intestate)  31.139
        • j.  Form: Distributee’s Whereabouts Unknown  31.140
        • k.  Form: Distributee Is Minor  31.141
        • l.  Form: Distribution to Trustee  31.142
        • m.  Omnibus Clause
          • (1)  Purpose of Omnibus Clause  31.143
          • (2)  Form: Omnibus Clause  31.144
        • n.  Judge’s Signature
          • (1)  Placement of Signature  31.145
          • (2)  Form: Judge’s Signature  31.146
    • E.  Short Order Form
      • 1.  Use of Short Form  31.147
      • 2.  Form: Short Order Form  31.148
    • F.  Receipts on Distribution
      • 1.  Contents  31.149
      • 2.  Form: Receipt of Distributee  31.150
    • G.  Recording Order  31.151
    • H.  Finality of Order
      • 1.  Appeal  31.152
      • 2.  Effect of Order When It Becomes Final  31.153
    • I.  Closing Statement to Distributees  31.154
    • J.  Final Discharge   31.155

32

Transfer of Assets and Discharge of Representative

Patrick Z. Riley

Mary M. Rudser

Leighton A. Burrey

  • I.  INTRODUCTION  32.1
  • II.  TRANSFER OF ASSETS
    • A.  Real Property  32.2
      • 1.  Transfer by Recordation of Order of Distribution  32.3
      • 2.  Transfer by Executor’s or Administrator’s Deed  32.4
      • 3.  Form: Deed  32.5
      • 4.  Recording Distribution Order or Deed  32.6
        • a.  Documents for Recorder’s Office  32.7
        • b.  Requirements for Recorded Court Order or Deed
          • (1)  Required Information  32.8
          • (2)  Required Format  32.9
        • c.  Form: Cover Sheet for Order of Distribution  32.10
        • d.  Preliminary Change of Ownership Report  32.11
          • (1)  Obtaining PCOR Form  32.12
          • (2)  Completing PCOR  32.13
          • (3)  Form: Preliminary Change of Ownership Report (BOE-502-A)  32.14
        • e.  Escape Tax  32.15
        • f.  Parent-Child or Grandparent-Grandchild Exclusions
          • (1)  Parent-Child Exclusion  32.16
          • (2)  Grandparent-Grandchild Exclusion  32.17
          • (3)  Time Requirements for Filing  32.18
          • (4)  Form: Claim for Reassessment Exclusion for Transfer Between Parent and Child (BOE-58-AH)   32.19
          • (5)  Form: Claim for Reassessment Exclusion for Transfer From Grandparent to Grandchild (BOE-58-G)  32.20
      • 5.  Title Insurance Issues  32.21
    • B.  Cash  32.22
    • C.  Vehicles, Vessels, Mobilehomes, and Other State-Registered Property  32.23
      • 1.  Transferring Title to Vehicles and Vessels
        • a.  Those Handled by DMV  32.24
        • b.  Methods of Transferring Title Through DMV  32.25
      • 2.  Transferring Mobilehomes  32.26
    • D.  Other Tangible Personal Property  32.27
    • E.  Securities  32.28
      • 1.  Transferring Securities Held in Brokerage Accounts  32.29
      • 2.  Transferring Shares Held by Issuing Company in Book Entry Form  32.30
      • 3.  Transferring Securities Held in Certificate Form
        • a.  Original Certificates
          • (1)  Determining Who Will Handle Transfer  32.31
          • (2)  Locating Transfer Agents  32.32
          • (3)  Requirements for Transferring Securities  32.33
            • (a)  Proof of Appointment as Personal Representative  32.34
            • (b)  Affidavit of Domicile  32.35
            • (c)  Form: Affidavit of Domicile  32.36
            • (d)  Stock Power  32.37
              • (i)  Medallion Signature Guaranty  32.38
              • (ii)  Form: Assignment Separate From Certificate  32.39
            • (e)  Letter of Instruction to Accompany Certificates
              • (i)  Contents of Letter  32.40
              • (ii)  Form: Sample Letter of Instructions to Accompany Certificates  32.41
          • (4)  Sending Documents  32.42
        • b.  Lost Certificates  32.43
          • (1)  Required Showing for New Certificate  32.44
          • (2)  Required Surety Bond  32.45
        • c.  Certificates Held by Decedent as Tenant in Common  32.46
      • 4.  Securities Held in Another’s Name  32.47
      • 5.  Stock Splits  32.48
        • a.  If Split Occurs Before Petition for Final Distribution  32.49
        • b.  If Split Occurs After Final Distribution Order  32.50
    • F.  Bonds and Other Debt Instruments
      • 1.  Transferring United States Government Savings Bonds and Debt Instruments Held in Treasury Direct Accounts
        • a.  Transfer Directly to the Distributee  32.51
        • b.  Reissue in the Representative’s Name, Then Transfer to Distributee  32.52
      • 2.  Transferring Corporate or Municipal Bonds  32.53
    • G.  Business Interests
      • 1.  Transferring Closely Held Entities
        • a.  Corporations
          • (1)  Review Documents for Restrictions on Transfers  32.54
          • (2)  Shareholders’ Agreement  32.55
        • b.  Professional Corporations  32.56
      • 2.  Transferring Partnership Interests  32.57
      • 3.  Transferring Limited Liability Company (LLC) Interests  32.58
      • 4.  Form: Transfer of Partnership or LLC Interest  32.59
      • 5.  Transferring Sole Proprietorship Interests
        • a.  In General  32.60
        • b.  Law Practice  32.61
    • H.  Promissory Notes and Deeds of Trust
      • 1.  Transfer of Unsecured Note by Assignment  32.62
      • 2.  Form: Assignment of Promissory Note  32.63
      • 3.  Note Secured by Deed of Trust  32.64
    • I.  Intellectual Property
      • 1.  Transferring Copyrights
        • a.  Accomplishing Transfer  32.65
        • b.  Recording Transfer  32.66
        • c.  Form: Assignment (Transfer) of Copyright  32.67
        • d.  Form: Letter to Copyright Office  32.68
      • 2.  Transferring Patents and Trademarks
        • a.  Accomplishing Transfer  32.69
        • b.  Recording Transfer  32.70
        • c.  Form: Assignment (Transfer) of Patent  32.71
        • d.  Form: Assignment (Transfer) of Trademark  32.72
      • 3.  Transferring Royalties  32.73
    • J.  Rights in Litigation  32.74
    • K.  Form: Assignment of Judgment  32.74A
  • III.  RECEIPT ON DISTRIBUTION AND DISCHARGE OF REPRESENTATIVE
    • A.  Receipt on Distribution
      • 1.  When Distribution Can Be Made
        • a.  Obtain Receipts  32.75
        • b.  File Receipts  32.76
        • c.  Form: Receipt on Distribution  32.77
      • 2.  Deposit With County Treasurer
        • a.  When Deposit With County Treasurer Authorized  32.78
        • b.  Claiming Property Deposited in County Treasury  32.78A
      • 3.  Distribution to the State  32.79
      • 4.  Procedure When Distributee Dies Before Distribution  32.80
    • B.  Discharge of Personal Representative  32.81
      • 1.  Notice to Surety  32.82
      • 2.  Notice to Tax Authorities  32.82A
      • 3.  Form: Ex Parte Petition for Final Discharge and Order (Judicial Council Form DE-295)  32.83
    • C.  After-Discovered Assets  32.84

33

Income Tax Concepts and Procedures

Ann C. Harris

Sandy Kasten

  • I.  INTRODUCTION   33.1
  • II.  PERSONAL REPRESENTATIVE’S RESPONSIBILITIES AND LIABILITIES
    • A.  Required Notice to Tax Authorities
      • 1.  Notice of Fiduciary Relationship—IRS Form 56  33.2
      • 2.  Notice of Probate  33.2A
    • B.  Personal Liability of Fiduciary
      • 1.  In General  33.3
      • 2.  Discharge From Personal Liability  33.4
      • 3.  Statute of Limitations
        • a.  For Assessment of Personal and Fiduciary Income Tax  33.5
        • b.  For Personal Liability of Personal Representative  33.6
      • 4.  Request for Prompt Assessment  33.7
  • III.  DECEDENT’S PERSONAL INCOME TAX RETURNS
    • A.  Responsibility for Filing  33.8
    • B.  Tax Returns for Years Before Year of Death  33.9
    • C.  Decedent’s Final Income Tax Return
      • 1.  Filing Requirements and Filing Status
        • a.  Filing Status  33.10
        • b.  Person Responsible for Filing  33.10A
        • c.  IRS Service Center for Filing Final Return  33.10B
      • 2.  Specific Issues Regarding Joint Returns
        • a.  Determination of Marital Status  33.11
        • b.  Who May Sign Return on Decedent’s Behalf  33.12
        • c.  Liability for and Deductibility of Taxes  33.13
        • d.  Innocent Spouse Relief From Liability  33.14
        • e.  Practical Considerations in Deciding Whether to File Joint Return  33.15
        • f.  Consequences of Appointment of Personal Representative After Joint Return Filed  33.16
      • 3.  Due Date and Extensions  33.17
      • 4.  Interest and Penalties
        • a.  Interest  33.18
        • b.  Penalty for Late Filing  33.19
        • c.  Penalty for Underpayment of Estimated Tax  33.20
        • d.  Accuracy-Related Penalty  33.21
        • e.  Penalty for Late Payment of Tax  33.22
        • f.  Waiver of Penalties
          • (1)  Penalty for Underpayment  33.23
          • (2)  Penalty for Late Payment  33.24
          • (3)  Penalty for Late Filing  33.25
      • 5.  Income and Deduction Items Properly Included on Final Return  33.26
        • a.  Specific Income Items
          • (1)  Compensation for Services  33.27
          • (2)  Installment Sales Proceeds  33.28
          • (3)  Investment Income  33.29
          • (4)  Income From Trusts and Estates  33.30
          • (5)  Income From Partnerships  33.31
          • (6)  Income From S Corporations  33.32
        • b.  Specific Deduction Items
          • (1)  Standard Deduction and Personal Exemption  33.33
          • (2)  Bad Debts  33.34
          • (3)  Casualty and Theft Losses for Federally Declared Disasters  33.35
          • (4)  Distributive Share of Partnership Losses  33.36
          • (5)  Depreciation  33.37
          • (6)  Medical Expenses  33.38
          • (7)  Amortized, Unrecovered Costs Incurred in Installment Sale of Capital Asset  33.39
      • 6.  Claims for Refund
        • a.  Procedure for Making Refund Claims  33.40
        • b.  Distribution of Refund Claims  33.41
      • 7.  Estimated Tax Payments Due From Decedent
        • a.  In General  33.42
        • b.  If Decedent Survived by Spouse  33.43
        • c.  Crediting Payments Made by Decedent and Spouse  33.44
  • IV.  INCOME TAXATION OF NONPROBATE ASSETS
    • A.  Nonprobate Situations in General  33.45
    • B.  Retirement Plans  33.46
      • 1.  Tax Treatment  33.47
      • 2.  Postdeath Required Minimum Distribution Rules  33.48
        • a.  Distribution to Surviving Spouse  33.49
        • b.  Distribution to Nonspouse Beneficiary  33.50
      • 3.  Roth IRAs  33.51
    • C.  Life Insurance  33.52
  • V.  ESTATE’S FIDUCIARY INCOME TAX RETURNS
    • A.  Notice to Franchise Tax Board [Deleted]  33.53
    • B.  Tax Identification Number  33.54
    • C.  Choice of Tax Year  33.55
    • D.  Electing Qualified Revocable Trust  33.56
    • E.  Reporting and Filing  33.57
      • 1.  Federal Filing Requirements  33.58
      • 2.  California Filing Requirements  33.59
      • 3.  Interest and Penalties  33.60
    • F.  Income of Estate
      • 1.  Gross Income and Taxable Income  33.61
      • 2.  Income in Respect of Decedent  33.62
        • a.  Specific IRD Items  33.63
          • (1)  Compensation for Services to Date of Death  33.64
          • (2)  Installment Obligations  33.65
          • (3)  Contracts for, e.g., Sale, Exchange of Assets  33.65A
          • (4)  Dividends and Interest  33.66
          • (5)  Required Distributions of Income From Trust  33.67
          • (6)  Pass-Through Entities  33.68
        • b.  Tax Basis and Character of IRD  33.69
        • c.  Acceleration of Income Recognition in Certain Cases  33.70
      • 3.  Capital Gains  33.71
      • 4.  Estate’s Final Year  33.72
    • G.  Deductions of Estate
      • 1.  In General  33.73
      • 2.  Nondeductibility of Expenses Allocated to Tax-Exempt Income  33.74
      • 3.  Administrative Expenses
        • a.  In General  33.75
        • b.  No Double Deduction  33.76
      • 4.  Charitable Deduction
        • a.  Allowance of Deduction  33.77
        • b.  Transfer Pursuant to Governing Instrument  33.78
        • c.  Qualified Charity  33.79
        • d.  Gross Income Requirement  33.80
      • 5.  Net Operating Losses  33.81
      • 6.  Depreciation, Depletion, and Amortization  33.82
      • 7.  Expenses in Respect of Decedent (Deductions in Respect of a Decedent)  33.83
      • 8.  Income Tax Deduction for Estate Tax Paid on IRD  33.84
      • 9.  Capital Expenditures  33.85
      • 10.  Capital Losses  33.86
      • 11.  Income Distribution Deduction
        • a.  Allowance of Income Distribution Deduction  33.87
          • (1)  Distributable Net Income
            • (a)  Purposes of DNI  33.88
            • (b)  Determination of DNI  33.89
            • (c)  Separate Share Rule  33.90
          • (2)  Fiduciary Accounting Income  33.91
          • (3)  Classes of Beneficiaries  33.92
            • (a)  Tier-1 Beneficiaries  33.93
            • (b)  Tier-2 Beneficiaries  33.94
            • (c)  Variable Tier  33.95
            • (d)  Charity as “Middle Tier”  33.96
        • b.  No Deduction for Bequests—IRC §663(a)(1)  33.97
        • c.  Amount of Deduction for “In-Kind” Distribution  33.98
      • 12.  Estate’s Final Year  33.99
    • H.  Distributions
      • 1.  Gain or Loss Recognition  33.100
      • 2.  Distributions of Income in Respect of Decedent
        • a.  Transfer of IRD to Other Than Recipient  33.101
        • b.  Use of IRD to Fund Pecuniary Bequest  33.102
        • c.  Transfer of Installment Obligation to Obligor  33.103
      • 3.  Distributions of S Corporation Stock  33.104
      • 4.  Withholding on Distributions to Nonresident Beneficiaries
        • a.  Distributions to Non-U.S. Beneficiaries  33.105
        • b.  Distributions to Non-California Resident Beneficiaries  33.106
    • I.  Tax Rates and Alternative Minimum Tax  33.107
    • J.  Medicare Contribution Tax on Net Investment Income  33.107A
    • K.  Estimated Tax  33.108
    • L.  California Income Tax Rules  33.109
  • VI.  TAXATION OF BENEFICIARIES
    • A.  Income and Deductions  33.110
    • B.  Character of Income  33.111
    • C.  Character and Allocation of Deductions Among Items Included in DNI  33.112
    • D.  Distributions on Termination of Estate  33.113
    • E.  Distributee Liability  33.114
  • VII.  TERMINATION OF ESTATE
    • A.  Termination of Estate as Separate Taxpayer  33.115
    • B.  Furnishing Information to Beneficiaries  33.116
    • C.  California Estate Income Tax Clearance Certificate No Longer Required  33.117
    • D.  Termination Notice—IRS Form 56  33.118
  • VIII.  BASIS OF INHERITED PROPERTY
    • A.  Basis Rules Before and After 2010
      • 1.  Basis Rules for Transfers at Death, Generally  33.119
      • 2.  New Basis Consistency Rules  33.119A
      • 3.  Property of Surviving Spouse or Domestic Partner  33.120
      • 4.  Exceptions to Date-of-Death Basis Rule  33.121
        • a.  Income in Respect of Decedent (IRD)  33.122
        • b.  Appreciated Property Acquired by Gift  33.123
      • 5.  Application of Basis Rule to Particular Forms of Ownership
        • a.  Joint Tenancy  33.124
        • b.  Community Property and Community Property With Right of Survivorship  33.125
        • c.  Tenancy in Common  33.126
      • 6.  Postdeath Basis Adjustments  33.127
    • B.  Holding Period of Assets Acquired From Decedent  33.128
    • C.  Basis Rules in 2010 for Estates That Elected to Opt Out of Estate Tax  33.129

34

Estate Tax Concepts and Procedures

Jon R. Vaught

  • I.  INTRODUCTION TO ESTATE TAX PROCEDURES
    • A.  Scope of Chapter  34.1
    • B.  American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012  34.1A
      • 1.  Effective Years  34.1B
      • 2.  Portability of Applicable Exclusion Amount  34.1C
        • a.  Effective Date  34.1D
        • b.  Electing Portability  34.1E
        • c.  Effect of Decision in Windsor for Portability  34.1F
    • C.  Estate, Gift, and Generation-Skipping Transfer (GST) Laws for Transfers Made Before January 1, 2014  34.1G
      • 1.  Filing Estate and GST Tax Returns  34.1H
      • 2.  Opting Out of Federal Estate Tax Rules for Decedents Dying in 2010  34.1I
    • D.  Basic Concepts
      • 1.  Federal Estate Tax System
        • a.  How Federal Estate Tax Is Computed  34.2
        • b.  Key Terms
          • (1)  Gross Estate  34.3
          • (2)  Deductions  34.4
          • (3)  Credits: Applicable Credit Amount and Applicable Exclusion Amount  34.5
      • 2.  GST Tax  34.6
      • 3.  California Estate Tax  34.7
  • II.  INITIAL STEPS FOR PERSONAL REPRESENTATIVE
    • A.  Collect Information and Documents  34.8
    • B.  Determine Who Will Prepare Tax Returns  34.9
    • C.  Initial Filings  34.10
  • III.  FEDERAL ESTATE TAX PROCEDURE
    • A.  Federal Estate Tax Return  34.11
      • 1.  Which Estates Must File Federal Estate Tax Return
        • a.  Citizens and Residents of United States  34.12
        • b.  Nonresidents With Property in United States  34.13
        • c.  Decedents Dying in 2010  34.14
      • 2.  Other Reasons to File  34.15
      • 3.  Date Federal Estate Tax Return Is Due  34.16
      • 4.  Extension of Time to File Federal Estate Tax Return  34.17
      • 5.  Who Is Required to File Federal Estate Tax Return  34.18
      • 6.  How and Where to File Federal Estate Tax Return  34.19
      • 7.  Estate Tax Closing Letter  34.19A
      • 8.  Claiming Refund After Federal Estate Tax Return Has Been Filed
        • a.  Amending Return to Claim Refund  34.20
        • b.  Effect of Protective Claim for Refund  34.20A
      • 9.  New Basis Reporting and Consistency Rules  34.20B
        • a.  Applies to Returns Filed After July 31, 2015  34.20C
        • b.  Applies Only to Returns Required to Be Filed Under IRC §6018(a)  34.20D
        • c.  Notification to the IRS and Beneficiaries  34.20E
        • d.  Valuation Adjustment Notification   34.20F
        • e.  Penalties  34.20G
    • B.  Paying Federal Estate Tax
      • 1.  When Estate Tax Is Due  34.21
      • 2.  Extensions of Time to Pay Estate Tax  34.22
        • a.  Extension of Time to Pay Tax (IRC §6161)  34.23
        • b.  Election to Postpone Payment of Tax on Reversionary and Remainder Interests (IRC §6163)  34.24
        • c.  Election to Make Installment Payments for Closely Held Business Interests (IRC §6166)  34.25
          • (1)  Installment Plan  34.26
          • (2)  Loss of Election  34.27
          • (3)  Declaratory Judgments  34.28
      • 3.  Fiduciary Liability for Payment of Tax  34.29
      • 4.  Request for Discharge From Personal Liability  34.30
      • 5.  Proration of Estate Taxes  34.31
        • a.  California Rule of Equitable Proration  34.32
        • b.  Allowances for Credits, Deductions, Exemptions, and IRC §2032A Elections  34.33
        • c.  Special Rule Concerning Interests in Trusts  34.34
        • d.  Collection From Nonprobate Beneficiaries  34.35
        • e.  Right of Reimbursement  34.36
    • C.  Penalties and Interest
      • 1.  Delinquency Penalties
        • a.  Failure to Timely File Estate Tax Return  34.37
        • b.  Failure to Timely Pay Estate Taxes  34.38
        • c.  Failure to Provide Basis Statements  34.38A
      • 2.  Penalties for Underpayment
        • a.  Accuracy-Related Penalties  34.39
        • b.  Fraud  34.40
        • c.  Return Preparer Penalties  34.40A
      • 3.  Reasonable-Cause Exceptions May Avoid Imposition of Penalties  34.41
      • 4.  Interest on Late Payment of Taxes  34.42
    • D.  Collection of Federal Estate Tax
      • 1.  General Rules Concerning Collection of Estate Taxes  34.43
      • 2.  Liens
        • a.  Estate Tax Lien  34.44
          • (1)  Divestment of Estate Tax Lien  34.45
          • (2)  Lien Continues After Fiduciary’s Discharge  34.46
          • (3)  Lien Follows to Bona Fide Purchaser if No Discharge Obtained  34.47
        • b.  Special Estate Tax Lien for IRC §6166 Deferrals  34.48
        • c.  Special Estate Tax Lien for IRC §2032A Elections  34.49
      • 3.  Third Party and Transferee Liability  34.50
    • E.  Audit, Appeal, Litigation, and Refund  34.51
      • 1.  Examination of Return  34.52
      • 2.  Appeal of Examination Determination  34.53
      • 3.  Notice of Deficiency  34.54
      • 4.  Statute of Limitations for Assessing Additional Tax  34.55
      • 5.  Litigation of Tax Issues  34.56
      • 6.  Notice to State Controller on Final Determination of Deficiency  34.57
      • 7.  Refund  34.58
  • IV.  CALIFORNIA ESTATE TAX PROCEDURE
    • A.  California Estate Tax Return  34.59
      • 1.  Which Estates Must File California Estate Tax Return  34.60
      • 2.  Date California Estate Tax Return Is Due  34.61
      • 3.  Who Is Required to File California Estate Tax Return  34.62
      • 4.  Amended Estate Tax Returns  34.63
    • B.  Paying California Estate Tax  34.64
    • C.  Collection of California Estate Tax; Lien  34.65
    • D.  Procedures for Determining California Estate Tax Deficiencies  34.66

CALIFORNIA DECEDENT ESTATE PRACTICE

(2d Edition)

May 2018

TABLE OF CONTENTS

 

File Name

Book Section

Title

CH01

Chapter 1

Initial Considerations

01-028

§1.28

Verification by Declaration

01-047

§1.47

Checklist: Estate Record

CH02

Chapter 2

Nonprobate Transfers

02-016

§2.16

Affidavit—Death of Joint Tenant

02-021

§2.21

Petition to Establish Fact of Death of Joint Tenant

02-023

§2.23

Order Establishing Fact of Death

CH03

Chapter 3

Transfer of Personal and Real Property in Small Estates

03-019

§3.19

Declaration Under Probate Code §§13100–13116

CH04

Chapter 4

Spouses and Registered Domestic Partners: Rights, Liabilities, and Special Transfer Procedures

04-029

§4.29

If No Consent to Transfer

04-047

§4.47

Election by Surviving Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner to Administer Survivor’s Community Property in Deceased Spouse’s or Partner’s Estate

04-052

§4.52

Election and Agreement by Surviving Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner to Transfer Community Property to Trustee

04-058

§4.58

Declaration to Collect Compensation Owed to Deceased Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner (Prob C §§13600–13606)

04-086

§4.86

Petition to Set Aside and Assign Estate

04-091

§4.91

Order Setting Aside Estate and Assigning Estate

CH06

Chapter 6

Notice

06-017

§6.17

Memorandum to Newspaper for Publication

06-037

§6.37

Waiver of Special Notice

06-038

§6.38

Withdrawal of Request for Special Notice

06-042

§6.42

Application for Order Shortening Time

06-044

§6.44

Order Shortening Time

06-047

§6.47

Waiver of Notice

CH07

Chapter 7

Petition for Probate, Letters, and Qualification

07-028

§7.28

Grounds for Appointment

07-037

§7.37

Notice

07-042

§7.42

Petition for General Powers to Special Administrator

07-043

§7.43

Order Granting General Powers to Special Administrator

07-046

§7.46

Procedural Checklist: Initiating Probate Proceeding

07-048

§7.48

Checklist: Most Common Errors in Petition for Probate

07-053

§7.53

Conditional Declination to Serve

07-064

§7.64

Certification of Translation of Foreign Language Will (Attachment 3f(2)–3)

07-086

§7.86

Sample Information Letter to Beneficiary

07-100

§7.100

Petition for Order to Supplement Title of Proceedings

07-101

§7.101

Order Supplementing Title of Proceedings

07-103

§7.103

Attachment 3g(1)(d) to Petition for Probate on Death or Disqualification of Executor

CH08

Chapter 8

Determination of Order of Death and Proceeding to Determine Survival

08-021

§8.21

Petition to Determine Survival

08-024

§8.24

Objections to Petition

08-026

§8.26

Order

CH09

Chapter 9

Bonds

09-010

§9.10

Receipt and Agreement by Depository

09-012

§9.12

Application to Deposit Assets Under Prob C §9703

09-022

§9.22

Income in Blocked Account to Be Distributed to Personal Representative

09-027A

§9.27A

Ex Parte Application to Increase Bond

09-032

§9.32

Petition to Reduce Bond

09-033

§9.33

Declaration in Support of Petition to Reduce Bond

09-034

§9.34

Order Reducing Bond

09-047A

§9.47A

Notice of Motion and Motion for Judgment Enforcing Liability on Bond

CH10

Chapter 10

Initial Duties of Personal Representative

10-005

§10.5

Sample Letter of Instructions

10-028

§10.28

Receipt for Anticipatory Distribution and Indemnity Agreement

10-048

§10.48

CHECKLIST: ISSUES FOR CONSIDERATION AT BEGINNING OF ESTATE ADMINISTRATION

CH11

Chapter 11

Ancillary Administration

11-023

§11.23

Attachment to Petition for Probate

11-029

§11.29

Attachment to Order for Probate

11-032

§11.32

Appointment of Representative

11-033

§11.33

Delivery of Assets; Request for Distribution

CH13

Chapter 13

Inventory and Appraisal

13-012

§13.12

Petition for Waiver of Appraisal by Probate Referee (Prob C §8903)

13-028

§13.28

Sample Form: Community Property Item

13-031

§13.31

Sample Form: Fractional Interest and Fractional Discount in Property

13-044

§13.44

Remainder Interest Subject to Life Tenancy

13-045

§13.45

Improved Real Property

13-052

§13.52

Sample Mortgage and Note Listings

13-068

§13.68

Checklist: Common Errors in Preparation of Inventory

13-076

§13.76

Notice of Filing of Inventory and Appraisal

13-082

§13.82

Corrected Inventory

CH14

Chapter 14

Creditors’ Claims

14-003

§14.3

Checklist: Personal Representative’s Handling of Creditors’ Claims

14-080

§14.80

Procedural Guide: Suit on Claim

14-083

§14.83

Notice of Pendency of Action

14-085

§14.85

Complaint

CH15

Chapter 15

Independent Administration of Estates

15-008

§15.8

Petition for Authority Under IAEA

15-010

§15.10

Warning That Must Be Included in Notice of Hearing

15-012

§15.12

Order Granting Authority Under IAEA

15-032

§15.32

Ex Parte Application for Restraining Order

15-033

§15.33

Restraining Order

CH16

Chapter 16

Petition for Instructions or Confirmation

16-008

§16.8

Petition to Authorize and Instruct or Approve and Confirm Action of Personal Representative

16-012

§16.12

Order Authorizing and Instructing or Approving and Confirming Acts of Personal Representative

CH17

Chapter 17

Statutory Protections for Family Members

17-012

§17.12

Petition for Order Modifying Period of Temporary Possession of Family Dwelling and Exempt Property

17-013

§17.13

Order Modifying Period for Temporary Possession of Family Dwelling and Exempt Property

17-016

§17.16

Petition for Order Setting Aside Exempt Personal Property

17-017

§17.17

Order Setting Aside Exempt Personal Property

17-032

§17.32

Petition for Order Setting Aside Probate Homestead

17-033

§17.33

Order Setting Aside Probate Homestead

17-061

§17.61

Petition for Payment of Family Allowance

17-062

§17.62

Order for Family Allowance

17-066

§17.66

Petition to Modify or Terminate Family Allowance

17-067

§17.67

Order Modifying or Terminating Family Allowance

CH18

Chapter 18

Sales of Estate Property

18-024

§18.24

Ex Parte Petition to Execute Exclusive Listing Agreement

18-025

§18.25

Order Authorizing Execution of Exclusive Listing Agreement

18-039

§18.39

Checklist: Reasons for Delay in Confirming Sales of Real Property

18-045

§18.45

Order Shortening Time of Notice of Sale

18-052

§18.52

Notice of Sale

18-057

§18.57

Bid to Purchase Real Property; Representative’s and Broker’s Acceptance

18-061

§18.61

Buyer Has Not Relied on Representations by Seller

18-077

§18.77

Increased Bid in Open Court

18-083

§18.83

Deed to Real Property

18-114

§18.114

Notice of Sale

18-119

§18.119

Report of Sale and Petition for Order Confirming Sale of Personal Property

18-123

§18.123

Order Confirming Sale of Personal Property

18-126

§18.126

Bill of Sale

CH19

Chapter 19

Investments and Purchases of Property

19-006

§19.6

Petition for Authority to Employ Investment Advisor

19-007

§19.7

Order Authorizing Employment of Investment Advisor

19-029

§19.29

Petition for Authority to Purchase Annuity

19-030

§19.30

Order Authorizing Representative to Purchase Annuity Policy

19-036

§19.36

Petition for Authority to Invest Money

19-037

§19.37

Order for Investment of Funds

CH20

Chapter 20

Compromise and Settlement of Claims

20-023

§20.23

Petition for Order Authorizing Compromise and Settlement of Creditor’s Claim or Suit

20-024

§20.24

Order Authorizing Compromise and Settlement of Creditor’s Claim or Suit

20-026

§20.26

Petition for Order Authorizing Discharge of Obligation Due Decedent

20-027

§20.27

Order Authorizing Representative to Discharge Obligation Due Decedent

20-033

§20.33

Petition for Order Authorizing Compromise of Claim Against Estate and Conveyance of Property to Lender in Complete Satisfaction of Estate’s Obligation Under Purchase Money Note

20-034

§20.34

Order Authorizing Compromise of Claim Against Estate and Conveyance of Property to Lender in Complete Satisfaction of Estate’s Obligation Under Purchase Money Note

20-037

§20.37

Petition for Order Authorizing Acceptance of Deed in Lieu of Foreclosure

20-038

§20.38

Order Authorizing Acceptance of Deed in Lieu of Foreclosure

20-040

§20.40

Petition for Order Authorizing Partial Satisfaction and Reconveyance

20-041

§20.41

Order Authorizing Partial Satisfaction and Reconveyance

CH21

Chapter 21

Borrowing Money

21-018

§21.18

Petition for Authority to Borrow Money and Execute Security Instrument

21-021

§21.21

Order Authorizing Representative to Borrow Money and to Execute Security Instrument

CH22

Chapter 22

Options and Leases

22-005

§22.5

Petition by Beneficiary of Testamentary Option for Order Authorizing and Directing Sale of Estate Property to Petitioner

22-007

§22.7

Order Authorizing and Directing Representative to Sell Estate Property to Beneficiary of Testamentary Option

22-012

§22.12

Petition for Order Authorizing and Directing Representative to Grant Option to Buy Estate Real Property

22-016

§22.16

Order Authorizing and Directing Representative to Grant Option to Buy Estate Real Property

22-030

§22.30

Petition for Order Authorizing Lease of Real Property

22-035

§22.35

Order Authorizing and Directing Lease of Real Property

22-036

§22.36

Lease Under Authority of Order

CH23

Chapter 23

Handling a Decedent’s Business Interests

23-008

§23.8

Potential Conflicts Disclosure and Waiver for Personal Representative and Family Member Beneficiary

23-035

§23.35

Petition to Authorize Continuation of Business or to Direct Discontinuance of Business

23-036

§23.36

Order Authorizing Continuation of Business or Directing Discontinuance of Business

23-063

§23.63

Petition for Authority for Personal Representative to Serve as Partner in Decedent’s Partnership

23-064

§23.64

Order Authorizing Personal Representative to Serve as Partner in Decedent’s Partnership

23-085

§23.85

Checklist for Law Firm Practice Administrator

23-086

§23.86

Ex Parte Petition for Appointment of Practice Administrator

23-087

§23.87

Order Appointing Practice Administrator

23-100

§23.100

Petition for Authority to Transfer Business Interest Subject to Agreement

23-101

§23.101

Order Authorizing Transfer of Business Interest Subject to Agreement

CH24

Chapter 24

Accounts

24-003

§24.3

Letter Advising Personal Representative Regarding Ongoing Recordkeeping

24-004

§24.4

Sample Timesheet for Personal Representative

24-009

§24.9

Authorization to Disclose Information

24-017

§24.17

Example Reconciliation to Statements

24-020

§24.20

Sample Ledger

24-034

§24.34

Waiver of Account by Distributee

24-035

§24.35

Acknowledgment of Satisfaction of Interest by Distributee

24-046

§24.46

Sample Summary of Account

24-047

§24.47

Sample Summary of Account if Real Property Specifically Devised

24-050

§24.50

Property on Hand at Beginning of Account Period

24-052

§24.52

Additional Assets Received

24-054

§24.54

Receipts—Chronological

24-055

§24.55

Receipts—Categorized

24-057

§24.57

Receipts When All or Part of the Estate to Be Distributed to an Income Beneficiary

24-061

§24.61

Net Income From Trade or Business (Rental Property)

24-062

§24.62

Net Income From Trade or Business (Business)

24-064

§24.64

Disbursements—Chronological Account

24-065

§24.65

Disbursements—Categorized Account

24-069

§24.69

Disbursements When All or Part of Estate to Be Distributed to Income Beneficiary

24-073

§24.73

Distributions

24-075

§24.75

Other Credits

24-078

§24.78

Property on Hand at Close of Account Period

CH25

Chapter 25

Preliminary Distributions

25-030

§25.30

Procedural Checklist

25-039

§25.39

Trustee’s Declaration Consenting to Act

25-040

§§25.40-25.64

Title and Introductory Paragraphs

 

§25.41

Compliance With Notice Requirements

 

§25.42

Inventory and Appraisal

 

§25.43

Character of Estate Property

 

§25.44

Election by Surviving Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner to Subject Property to Administration

 

§25.45

Actions Taken Under Independent Administration of Estates Act (IAEA)

 

§25.46

Debts Paid Without Creditors’ Claims

 

§25.47

Creditors’ Claims

 

§25.48

Estate Taxes

 

§25.49

Provisions for Payment of Estate Taxes

 

§25.50

Income Taxes

 

§25.53

Personal Property Taxes

 

§25.54

Names and Residences of Heirs and Beneficiaries

 

§25.55

Allegation Regarding Prior Distributions

 

§25.56

Description of Property to Be Distributed

 

§25.58

Proposed Distribution

 

§25.59

Propriety of Proposed Distribution

 

§25.60

Compliance With 50 Percent Limitation of Prob C §11623

 

§25.62

Requirement of Bond for Distributees

 

§25.63

Allowance on Account of Compensation

 

§25.64

Request for Order

25-073

§§25.73-25.93

Caption and Introduction

 

§25.74

Notice

 

§25.75

Petition True

 

§25.76

Date of Death and Domicile

 

§25.77

Appointment and Qualification of Representative

 

§25.78

Authority Under Independent Administration of Estates Act

 

§25.79

Passage of Time Since Issuance of Letters

 

§25.80

Inventory and Appraisal

 

§25.81

Character of Estate Property

 

§25.82

Election by Surviving Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner to Subject Property to Administration

 

§25.83

Disposition of Creditors’ Claims

 

§25.84

Payment of Debts and Expenses

 

§25.85

Estate Taxes

 

§25.86

Payment of State and Federal Income Taxes

 

§25.88

Personal Property Taxes

 

§25.89

Allegation Regarding Financial Status of Estate

 

§25.90

Propriety of Distribution

 

§25.91

Compliance With 50 Percent Limitation of Prob C §11623

 

§25.92

Requirement of Distributee’s Bond

 

§25.93

Order

25-095

§25.95

Receipt of Distributee

CH27

Chapter 27

Probate Code §850 Petitions: Title Disputes and Executory Contracts

27-012

§27.12

Petition by Personal Representative to Establish Estate’s Ownership of Property

27-013

§27.13

Petition by Personal Representative to Determine Ownership of Estate Property

27-014

§27.14

Petition by Third Party Claimant to Determine Ownership of Estate Property

27-015

§27.15

Petition by Personal Representative for Specific Performance of Executory Contract for Sale of Property

27-016

§27.16

Petition by Purchaser for Specific Performance of Executory Contract of Sale for Property

27-025

§27.25

Objections to Personal Representative’s Petition to Determine Ownership of Estate Property

27-030

§27.30

Order Determining Ownership of Estate Property and Transferring Property to Claimant

27-031

§27.31

Order Establishing Estate’s Ownership of Property and Directing Transfer

27-032

§27.32

Order for Specific Performance and Directing Conveyance of Property

CH28

Chapter 28

Proceedings to Determine Entitlement to Estate Distribution

28-012

§28.12

Petition for Determination of Entitlement to Estate Distribution

28-018

§28.18

Statement of Interest

28-047

§28.47

Order Determining Entitlement to Estate Distribution

CH29

Chapter 29

Actions By and Against Personal Representative

29-061

§29.61

Complaint in Action by Representative or Successor in Interest

29-062

§29.62

Declaration by Successor in Interest

29-071

§29.71

Notice of Motion and Motion for Order Substituting Personal Representative as Defendant and for Leave to File Supplemental Complaint

29-109

§29.109

Petition for Order Compelling Personal Representative or Other Named Person to Account

29-110

§29.110

Order Compelling Personal Representative or Other Named Person to Account

29-112

§29.112

Petition for Issuance of Citation Requiring Personal Representative to Appear and Show Cause Why He or She Should Not Be Punished for Contempt

29-125

§29.125

Objections to Account and Request for Surcharge of Personal Representative and Other Remedies

29-130

§29.130

Petition for Removal of Representative

29-131

§29.131

Order for Issuance of Citation

29-132

§29.132

Order Removing Representative

29-137

§29.137

Notice of Motion Objecting to Bond

29-139

§29.139

Order Requiring Further Bond

CH30

Chapter 30

Compensation and Fees

30-004

§30.4

Retainer Agreement Between Personal Representative and Attorney

30-008

§30.8

Petition by Personal Representative for Relief From Will Provision for Compensation

30-010

§30.10

Order Granting Relief From Will Provision for Compensation of Personal Representative

30-015

§30.15

Waiver of Compensation as Representative

30-018

§30.18

Petition for Authority to Enter Into Contingent Fee Agreement

30-020

§30.20

Order Authorizing Contingent Fee Agreement

30-024

§30.24

Sample Agreement on Performance of and Compensation for Duties of Representative

30-026

§30.26

Petition for Prior Approval of Dual Compensation for Services as Personal Representative and Attorney for Personal Representative

30-028

§30.28

Order Approving Right to Compensation as Personal Representative and for Services as Attorney for Personal Representative

30-030

§30.30

Agreement Not to Participate in Fees Received by Attorneys for Personal Representative

30-034

§30.34

Checklist: “Ordinary” Attorney Services

30-061

§30.61

Petition for Allowance of Compensation

30-062

§30.62

Sample Declaration in Support of Request for Fees for Extraordinary Legal Services

30-064

§30.64

Order for Allowance of Ordinary Compensation to Personal Representative and Ordinary and Extraordinary Fees to Attorney

CH31

Chapter 31

Account, Report, and Petition for Final Distribution

31-015

§§31.15-31.93

Waiver of Account by Distributee

 

§31.17

Caption and Introduction

 

§31.18

Date of Death and Domicile; Ancillary Administration

 

§31.19

Appointment of Executor or Administrator; Authority Under Independent Administration of Estates Act

 

§31.20

Petition to Administer Estate Published

 

§31.22

Notice to Public Entities

 

§31.23A

Special Notice

 

§31.24

Inventory and Appraisal

 

§31.26

Character of Estate Property

 

§31.28

Election by Surviving Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner to Subject Property to Administration

 

§31.30

Summary of Account

 

§31.32

Allegations of Waiver of Account

 

§31.34

Transactions During Account Period

 

§31.35

Unusual Expenditures

 

§31.36

Compensation Paid During Account Period

 

§31.37

Family or Affiliate Relationship

 

§31.38

Investment of Cash

 

§31.39

Sale of Assets

 

§31.40

Purchase, Exchange, or Change in Form of Assets

 

§31.42

Actions Taken Under Independent Administration of Estates Act

 

§31.44

Notice to Creditors

 

§31.46

Debts Paid Without Creditors’ Claims

 

§31.48

Creditors’ Claims

 

§31.48B

Allocation of Debts

 

§31.50

Estate Taxes

 

§31.52

Income Taxes

 

§31.56

Personal Property Taxes

 

§31.59

Allowance or Waiver of Statutory Compensation

 

§31.61

Request for Compensation for Extraordinary Services

 

§31.63

Status of Estate

 

§31.65

Assets on Hand

 

§31.67

Reserve for Closing Expenses

 

§31.69

Names and Residences of Heirs and Beneficiaries

 

§31.76

Proposed Distribution

 

§31.79

Distribution to Trustee of Testamentary Trust

 

§31.81

Whereabouts of Distributee Unknown

 

§31.83

Gift to Minor Not Exceeding $5000

 

§31.83A

Written Assurance of Parent

 

§31.84

Gift to Custodian for Minor

 

§31.85

Gift to Minor Exceeding $5000

 

§31.87

Gift to Predeceased Beneficiary

 

§31.88B

Abatement

 

§31.88C

Chart: General Gifts to Nonrelatives to Be Abated

 

§31.88E

Ademption by Extinction

 

§31.90

Proration of Estate Taxes

 

§31.92

Omnibus Clause

 

§31.93

Request for Orders

31-096

§31.96

Checklist: Final Review

31-107

§§31.107-31.146

Caption and Introductory Paragraph

 

§31.109

Compliance With Notice Requirements

 

§31.111

Account and Petition True

 

§31.113

Date of Death and Domicile; Ancillary Administration

 

§31.114

Appointment and Qualification of Representative

 

§31.115

Authority Under Independent Administration of Estates Act

 

§31.116

Estate in Condition to Be Closed; Waiver of Account

 

§31.117

Character of Estate Property

 

§31.118

Election by Surviving Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner to Subject Property to Administration

 

§31.119

Disposition of Claims

 

§31.120

Payment of Debts and Expenses

 

§31.121

Estate Tax

 

§31.122

Payment of State and Federal Income Taxes

 

§31.123

Payment of Personal Property Taxes

 

§31.124

Closing Expenses and Distribution of Reserve

 

§31.125

Proposed Distribution

 

§31.127

Compensation Allowed

 

§31.128

Administration of Estate Closed With/Without Waiver of Account

 

§31.130

Account Settled

 

§31.132

Personal Representative’s Acts Approved

 

§31.133

Personal Representative’s Compensation

 

§31.134

Attorney’s Compensation

 

§31.135

Closing Expenses

 

§31.136

Testamentary Trustee to Pay Tax Deficiencies

 

§31.137

Surviving Spouse or Domestic Partner’s Community and Quasi-Community Property Administered in Proceeding

 

§31.139

Distribution Plan (Testate/Intestate)

 

§31.140

Distributee’s Whereabouts Unknown

 

§31.141

Distributee Is Minor

 

§31.142

Distribution to Trustee

 

§31.144

Omnibus Clause

 

§31.146

Judge’s Signature

31-148

§31.148

Short Order Form

31-150

§31.150

Receipt of Distributee

CH32

Chapter 32

Transfer of Assets and Discharge of Representative

32-005

§32.5

Deed

32-010

§32.10

Cover Sheet for Order of Distribution

32-036

§32.36

Affidavit of Domicile

32-039

§32.39

Assignment Separate From Certificate

32-041

§32.41

Sample Letter of Instructions to Accompany Certificates

32-059

§32.59

Transfer of Partnership or LLC Interest

32-063

§32.63

Assignment of Promissory Note

32-067

§32.67

Assignment (Transfer) of Copyright

32-068

§32.68

Letter to Copyright Office

32-071

§32.71

Assignment (Transfer) of Patent

32-072

§32.72

Assignment (Transfer) of Trademark

32-074A

§32.74A

Assignment of Judgment

32-077

§32.77

Receipt on Distribution

 

Selected Developments

May 2018 Update

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (Pub L 115–97, 131 Stat 2054), signed into law on December 22, 2017, has sweeping changes relating to income taxes, but only affected the estate, gift, and GST by an increase in the applicable exemption amount (AEA) to $11.2 million for the year 2018, subject to adjustment for inflation through 2025. The AEA will revert back to $5 million (adjusted for post-2011 inflation) after 2025. See chaps 33 and 34 for all changes under the Act.

AB 976 (Stats 2017, ch 319) amends, renumbers, and adds sections to the Probate Code (including Prob C §§1215, 1265) authorizing electronic service to be performed directly by another person or an agent of another person. The bill makes additional changes to the conditions governing electronic service, including those relating to, among other things, signatures and the timing of filing and service. This bill also authorizes proof of electronic service to be filed with the court, as specified. Practitioners who choose to electronically serve documents should be familiar with the rules and guidelines for electronic service under Cal Rules of Ct 2.251 and CCP §1010.6. See §§1.37, 2.22, 3.43, 3.52, 4.63, 4.88, chap 6, 7.83, 12.25, 13.9, 15.9, 15.23, 18.71, 19.20, 22.4A, 22.13, 22.31, 25.66, 27.18, 28.6, 28.14, 30.27, 30.63, chap 31.

During the lifetime of any party, the beneficiary has no rights to the sums on deposit unless there is clear and convincing evidence of a different intent. In Higgins v Higgins (2017) 11 CA5th 648, the appellate court imposed a constructive trust in favor of decedent’s estate on bank accounts established by the surviving party with funds deposited by decedent in multiple-party bank accounts “in trust for” decedent. The court found clear and convincing evidence that the surviving party continued to hold the funds in trust. See §2.49.

In Brace v Speier (In re Brace) (BAP 9th Cir 2017) 566 BR 13, a general community property presumption in Fam C §760 applied to joint tenancy property in bankruptcy. See §4.7.

Under CCP §415.20(c), if the only address reasonably known for the person to be served is a private mailbox from a commercial mail receiving agency, service of process may be effected on the first delivery attempt by leaving a copy of the summons and complaint with the commercial mail-receiving agency, as described in Bus & P C §17538.5. See §§6.23, 6.29.

Although it previously issued an apostille or certification, the California Secretary of State’s office now issues a single Authentication Certificate for documents to be used outside of the country. See §12.8.

Judicial Council Form DE-111 (Petition for Probate) was revised July 1, 2017. The form provides boxes to complete if the original will is lost or destroyed. See revised form at §7.49. The discrepancy between the waiver box on Judicial Council Form DE-111 (box 3e) and the Attachment box (A-3d) on Judicial Council Form DE-142/DE-111 (A-3e) has been fixed. See §9.4A. See also §§7.52–7.103.

Probate Code §16350 of the Uniform Principal and Income Act (UPAIA) was repealed and added to revise directions for how a trustee is required to allocate money to beneficiaries of an estate or trust as principal or income. AB 307 (Stats 2017, ch 577). See §24.19

A no-contest clause is only enforceable if it is in the challenged document or expressly references it. Aviles v Swearingen (2017) 16 CA5th 485. See §26.43.

The probate court having jurisdiction of a decedent’s estate may entertain, confirm, and effect a settlement agreement, whether in litigation or not, or it may modify or disapprove it. If one fails to obtain probate court approval, the probate court may lose jurisdiction to enforce the judgment. Sayta v Chu (2017) CA5th 960. See §26.60.

Effective January 1, 2018, Prob C §851.1 clarifies that a petitioner can commence discovery as allowed under the Code of Civil Procedure commencing with the service of the petition and notice under Prob C §851(a). Generally a petitioner must wait for a period of time before commencing certain discovery (see CCP §2025.210). See §27.27.

In Dent v Wolf (2017) 15 CA5th 230, an adult child sought a declaration of paternity after the death of the putative father and had standing to bring a parentage action under Fam C §7630(c). See §§28.8, 28.41.

The personal representative of a deceased crime victim may not obtain restitution under Pen C §1202.4 for economic losses incurred by the estate after the victim’s death. However, if a victim’s family member is also a victim under Pen C §1202.4(k)(1), the family member may be awarded restitution for funeral and burial expenses. People v Mays (2017) 15 CA5th 1232. See §29.32.

The limitations period of CCP §366.2 does not apply to spousal claims of breach of fiduciary duty brought against the estate of a deceased spouse under Fam C §1101. See Yeh v Tai (Dec. 21, 2017, B280003) 2017 Cal App Lexis 1145 (spousal breach of fiduciary duty action brought against estate 18 months after decedent’s death not barred by CCP §366.2 and only subject to defense of laches). See §§29.64, 29.68.

A statement of decision removing a personal representative is also appealable if it can be construed as the trial court’s final decision on the merits. Estate of Reed (2017) 16 CA5th 1122 (appeal was proper even though order removing personal representative was contained in a statement of decision instead of a separate order or judgment). See §29.135.

Two new sections were added to chapter 31 to clarify and explain the notice provisions under AB 976 (Stats 2017, ch 319). See §§31.98–31.98C.

The exemption from alternative minimum tax for trusts and estates is $24,100 in 2017 and is reduced by 25 percent of alternative minimum taxable income in excess of $80,450. The AMT is 26 percent on the first $186,300 in 2016 and $187,800 in 2017 of AMTI in excess of the exemption plus 28 percent on AMTI over those amounts. Rev Proc 2016–55, 2016–45 Int Rev Bull 707. See also IRC §55(d)(1)(D), (3)(A), (3)(C). See §33.107.

Effective January 1, 2018, in addition to any other recording fees, the recorder collects a fee of $75 to record each deed or any other real estate instrument unless an exemption applies. Gov C §27388.1. The fee must not exceed $225. The fee is not imposed on any real estate instrument, paper, or notice recorded in connection with a transfer subject to the imposition of a documentary transfer tax as defined in Rev & T C §11911 or on any real estate instrument, paper, or notice recorded in connection with a transfer of real property that is a residential dwelling to an owner-occupier. See §32.6.

In Rev Proc 2017–34, 2017–26 Int Rev Bull 1282, the Service provides for a simplified method for making later portability elections for estates of taxpayers with a gross estate less than the AEA in the year of death. Under this revenue procedure, if the taxpayer has not been deceased for more than 2 years, the estate may elect portability by filing a complete and properly prepared estate tax return on or before the second anniversary of taxpayer’s date of death. See drafting considerations at §34.1E.

A new section on the Estate Tax Closing Letter has been added to chapter 34. See §34.19A.

There were updates and changes to charts, checklists, and forms in chaps 1, 6, 7, 13, 15, 18, 21, 22, 24, 25, and 30–32.

About the Authors

ALEX R. BORDEN established the Borden Law Office in Torrance and specializes in conservatorship, estate and trust administration, and litigation. Mr. Borden received his B.A. in Economics with a business emphasis (cum laude) in 1991 from the University of Colorado (Boulder) and his J.D. in 1995 from Loyola Law School (Los Angeles). Mr. Borden serves on and actively participates in the Los Angeles Superior Court Probate Volunteer Panel and Pro Per Guardianship Program of the South Bay Bar Association Estates and Trusts Section and regularly serves as court-appointed personal representative in decedent estate proceedings.

JANICE CROSETTI-TITMUS practices with the Law Offices of Crosetti & Titmus in Lafayette. She received a B.A., with honors, in English from the University of California, Berkeley, and her J.D. in 1981 from John F. Kennedy University School of Law. She is a member of the Alameda County, Contra Costa County, and Los Angeles County bar associations and is the former chair and founding and current board member of the Conservatorship/Guardianship/Probate/Trust Section of the Contra Costa County Bar Association. She has served as Pro Tem Judge, Probate Department, Contra Costa County Superior Court. She is a member of the Estate Planning Council of Diablo Valley, Lafayette Chamber of Commerce. Her practice focuses on the estate planning areas of wills, trusts, decedent estates, and conservatorship. She is Martindale-Hubbell AV-rated.

PAIGE T. ELDREDGE is the principal of Estate Minders, Inc., with locations in San Rafael and Sebastopol. She has specialized in preparing fiduciary accountings since 1995. Ms. Eldredge teaches ongoing courses in “Accounting and Record Keeping for Positions of Trust” through California State University Fullerton Extended Education and is a member of both the Professional Fiduciary Association of California and the San Francisco Paralegal Association. She received her B.A. from Humboldt State University in 1985.

DAVID J. ELEFANT practices in Walnut Creek. His practice emphasizes estate planning and trust and probate administration. He received his B.A. in 1974 from the University of California, Berkeley, and his J.D. in 1977 from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law. Following graduation, he served as a law clerk to Judge William East, Senior U.S. District Judge, District of Oregon. Mr. Elefant served as an instructor in the School of Extended Education at St. Mary’s College in Moraga, teaching estate planning and probate administration from 1996 to 2006, and currently serves as an instructor at JFK University in the School of Management, Paralegal and Legal Studies Program. He was also a visiting professor in the School of Law at the University of Debrecen, Hungary, in the fall of 2008. He serves as a California Probate Referee in Contra Costa County and served as President of the California Probate Referees Association in 1998 and 2008. Mr. Elefant also serves as Judge Pro Tem for the Contra Costa County Superior Court probate department and has served as an editor for various CEB publications in this field. Mr. Elefant is active in the Contra Costa County Bar Association and is one of the co-chairs of its Probate and Trusts Section.

FATIMA BRUNSON EVANS is a partner in the law firm of Fitzgerald Abbott & Beardsley LLP and is a member of its Estates & Trusts Practice Group. Ms. Evans handles a variety of probate, trust, conservatorship, and estate planning matters and advises fiduciaries regarding their duties with respect to those matters. She also has extensive experience in preparing special needs trusts in the estate planning context as well as for the purpose of protecting litigation proceeds. She graduated cum laude with a B.A. degree from the University of California, Los Angeles, and received her J.D. degree from the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law. Ms. Evans is a former Chair of the Elder Law Committee of the Trusts and Estates Section of the Alameda County Bar Association. She is currently a member of the Trusts and Estates Section of the Alameda County Bar Association, the Estate Planning Council of Diablo Valley, the Charles Houston Bar Association, and Black Women Lawyers of Northern California.

MARIE E. GALANTI was a sole practitioner in Santa Rosa. In addition to estate planning, probate, and trust administration, she specialized in international private transactions, including estate planning with foreign assets, and settling estates for Americans with assets in foreign countries and for nonresident aliens in the United States. A former journalist and publisher of a French-language newspaper in San Francisco, Ms. Galanti received her Ph.D. in French Civilization from the University of Kansas and her J.D. from Golden Gate University in San Francisco. She served as a Director and Attorney Representative of the Redwood Empire Estate Planning Council in Santa Rosa and was a member of the Dean’s Advisory Council at Golden Gate University. Ms. Galanti passed away in 2013.

ANDREA GEE is a partner in Ashworth & Ashworth, LLP, Santa Ana, emphasizing estate planning, probate, and trust law. Ms. Gee received her B.Journ. in 1983 from the University of Texas (Austin) and her J.D. in 1992 from Western State University School of Law.

MICHAEL C. GERSON is an attorney at the firm of Hartog, Baer & Hand, PC, in Orinda. His practice focuses on tax, estate planning, probate, and trust administration. Mr. Gerson received his LL.M. in Estate Planning from the University of Miami (Florida) in 1999 and his J.D. from the University of California, Davis, School of Law in 1995. Mr. Gerson is a Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC) and is certified as a specialist in Estate Planning, Trust, and Probate Law and in Taxation Law by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization.

MARY F. GILLICK is of counsel with Withers Bergman LLP, San Diego, where she focuses on trust and estate litigation. She has experience in handling elder abuse cases, conservatorships and other protective proceedings. Ms. Gillick received her B.S. in Nursing from the University of Maryland in 1972 and her J.D. (magna cum laude) from the University of San Diego in 1984. She has served on the Executive Committee of the Trusts and Estates Section of the California State Bar, where she served as Chair of the Litigation Committee, and has spoken frequently at State Bar meetings, authored legislation, and contributed regularly to the California Trusts and Estates Quarterly. Additionally, Ms. Gillick is a coauthor of West Publishing’s California Civil Practice—Probate and Trust Proceedings and has authored many other publications in this area of the law. Currently, she is on the Fiduciary Litigation Committee of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel.

RICHARD A. GORINI is a principal in the San Jose law firm of Boskovich, Gorini & Vanasse, LLP. He graduated from Creighton University in 1977 summa cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in Accounting. He received his J.D. from Santa Clara University in 1980. He has been a certified specialist in the area of estate planning, trust, and probate law of the State Bar of California since 1990; a former member and advisor (1994–2000) to the Executive Committee of the Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law Section (now Trusts and Estates Section) of the State Bar of California; a past chairman of the Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law Section of the Santa Clara County Bar Association; a former Trustee of the Silicon Valley Bar Association; and a Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC) since 1996. He has served as a court-appointed referee for the superior courts of Santa Clara and Monterey counties in cases involving trust and estate litigation. He taught courses on probate administration, conservatorship law, and fiduciary tax law and procedure for the Santa Clara University Paralegal Institute from 1984 to 1992. He has authored numerous articles for the California Trusts and Estates Quarterly (and its predecessor publication) and is a frequent lecturer for the CEB, Silicon Valley Bar Association, Santa Clara County Bar Association, Bar Association of San Francisco, and other professional associations on matters of estate planning, probate and trust law, and related ethical and legal malpractice issues. He was a consultant to CEB for the 2007 Action Guide Handling a Probate.

MARGARET M. HAND is a principal at Hartog, Baer & Hand, APC, where she crafts practical estate planning solutions for both simple and complicated families. For 22 years, she devoted half of her practice to trust and estate litigation and for the past 14 years, she has mediated all manner of disputes arising under the Probate Code. She is a fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC) and a Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law. Since 2005, she has been a Top 100 Super Lawyer® or Top 50 Female Super Lawyer, or both. She teaches continuing education programs to attorneys and CPAs throughout California and has published a variety of chapters, workbooks and articles on estate planning, probate and trust law; she also is a coauthor of CEB’s California Fiduciary Accounting (CEB 2015). She is a graduate of University of California, Berkeley, School of Law.

ANN C. HARRIS received her J.D. in 1980 from the University of San Diego and her LL.M. in Taxation in 1981 from Boston University. She is a former Adjunct Professor of Law at the University of San Diego and has taught Federal Income Taxation of Trusts and Estates and Federal Gift, Estate and Generation-Skipping Transfer Taxation. She has authored various articles for the American Bar Association, the Practicing Law Institute, and Estate Planning magazine and is a contributing author to Drafting California Irrevocable Trusts (3d ed Cal CEB) and the West Group’s California Transaction Forms, Estate Planning set. Ms. Harris received the Spirit of CEB award in 2013. Ms. Harris currently practices in Carlsbad.

CRAIG L. JUDSON is a partner with the Walnut Creek firm of Bold, Polisner, Maddow, Nelson & Judson, a professional corporation. He received his B.A. in 1981 from the University of California, Davis (political science/public service major and graduation with summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa honors) and his J.D. in 1984 from the University of California, Davis, School of Law. His practice focuses on probate, estate, and trust planning and litigation, as well as real estate, construction defect, personal injury, and civil litigation, including representation of numerous local public agencies. In addition, he regularly serves as a Judge Pro Tem for the Superior Court of Contra Costa County Probate Department and three branch traffic departments. Mr. Judson is a member of the American, California, and Contra Costa County bar associations and serves as a private arbitrator and mediator.

JANET KAHN is a licensed professional fiduciary and sole proprietor of Janet Kahn Professional Fiduciary Services. Her practice focuses on conservatorships, guardianships, probate administration, and trust administration. Ms. Kahn received a B.A. from Douglass College of Rutgers University, an M.B.A. from Golden Gate University, and a J.D. from San Francisco Law School. She is a member of the East Bay Estate Planning Council, the Trusts and Estates Section of the Alameda County Bar Association, and the Elder Law and the Conservatorship/Guardianship, Probate and Trust sections of the Contra Costa County Bar Association. Ms. Kahn is coauthor of Handling a Fiduciary Accounting (Cal CEB Action Guide).

SANDY KASTEN is a sole practitioner in Berkeley. Her practice focuses on fiduciary and estate taxation, with an emphasis on tax return preparation and planning for trusts, estates, and individuals. Ms. Kasten is a 1976 graduate of the University of California, Hastings College of the Law, and received her M.B.A. in Taxation from Golden Gate University in 1981. She studied accounting at California State University East Bay (formerly CSU Hayward). She is a member of the Alameda County Bar Association and currently serves as treasurer of the Calaveras County Bar Association. She is a past board member of Women Lawyers of Alameda County.

SEAN R. KENNEY is an associate at The Myers Law Firm, P.C., a San Francisco estate planning law firm. He received his B.A. from the University of Vermont and his J.D. from Golden Gate University School of Law. He was named top tax student in his class, receiving the academic excellence award from the faculty of Golden Gate University School of Law’s tax department. His practice consists of advising high-net-worth individuals in the areas of tax and estate planning, in addition to closely held business succession.

DAVID A. LEVIN is Senior Trust Officer at Union Bank. Mr. Levin was formerly in private practice with a primary emphasis on estate planning, administration, and mediation and litigation of trust and estate matters. He received his B.A. from the University of California, Berkeley, his J.D. from the University of San Francisco School of Law, and his LL.M. in Taxation from Golden Gate University School of Law. Mr. Levin has served as President of the East Bay Estate Planning Council, as Chair of the Trust and Estate Administration subcommittee of the Alameda County Bar Association, and as an adjunct professor of law at John F. Kennedy University School of Law, where he taught courses on Wills and Trusts. He is a member of the East Bay Trusts and Estates Lawyers and serves on the Board of Directors for the Cerebral Palsy Center for the Bay Area (in Oakland).

DEANNA D. LYON is a partner with the firm of Wendel, Rosen, Black & Dean LLP in Oakland. Her practice focuses on estate planning, probate, and trust administration. Ms. Lyon received her B.A., with honors, in 1969 from California State University, Fullerton, and her J.D. in 1972 from the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law. Ms. Lyon is a Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization. She is a member of the Trusts and Estates sections of the State Bar of California and a member of the East Bay Estate Planning Council. Ms. Lyon is a former Director of the Alameda County Bar Association, a former member of the Executive Committee of the Probate Section of the Alameda County Bar Association, and a former chair of the Community Service Committee of the Alameda County Bar Association.

PATINA A. MADISON graduated from California State University, Long Beach, in 1973 with a degree in Psychology. While working toward a master’s degree in special education, she joined the California Probate Referee’s office in Long Beach. She received a certification as a paralegal in 1982, having completed the paralegal studies program at the University of California, Irvine. Ms. Madison graduated from Western State University College of Law in 1991 with an emphasis in Taxation. Since her admission to the bar, she has been a sole practitioner, limiting her practice to probate, conservatorship, and estate planning matters. She has served as a Judge Pro Tem in the Probate Department of the Orange County Superior Court, lectured for CEB, and acted as an expert witness.

AMY L. McEVOY is an associate with the firm of Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP in Los Angeles. Her practice focuses on estate planning, trust administration, and probate. Ms. McEvoy received her B.A. in 1999 from the University of Southern California and her J.D. with Distinction in 2003 from McGeorge School of Law (University of the Pacific). Ms. McEvoy is a member of the Executive Committee of the Trusts and Estates Section of the Los Angeles County Bar Association.

ANNE BRUNER NASH is of counsel to the firm of Roisman Henel LLP in Oakland. Her practice focuses on estate planning, probate, and trust administration. Ms. Nash received her B.A. with Distinction in 1984 from Stanford University and her J.D. in 1987 from the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law. Ms. Nash is certified as a specialist in Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization. She is a member of the Estate Planning Council of the East Bay, East Bay Tax Club, and the Trusts and Estates Section of the California State Bar.

GENEVIEVE S. ORTA is a partner with Osterloh & Orta, LLP. Her practice focuses on estate planning, probate, and trust administration. Ms. Orta received a B.S. from Syracuse University in 1990, a J.D. from the University of San Francisco School of Law (magna cum laude) in 1996, and an LL.M. in Taxation with honors from Golden Gate University in 2008. Ms. Orta is a founding member of East Bay Trusts & Estates Lawyers and belongs to the East Bay Estate Planning Council, the San Francisco Estate Planning Council, the Asian American Bar Association, and the California Bar Association Trusts and Estates Section. She is also an adjunct professor of law at John F. Kennedy University School of Law, where she teaches Wills & Trusts, Estate Planning, and Community Property. Ms. Orta has been a Northern California “Super Lawyer” in the area of estate planning and probate from 2007 to the present.

MELINDA MacDONALD OSTERLOH is a partner with Osterloh & Orta, LLP, specializing in estate planning, probate, and trust administration. In 1993, Ms. Osterloh received dual undergraduate degrees in English Literature and Psychology from Randolph-Macon Woman’s College. She graduated from the University of San Francisco School of Law in 1996 and was a clerk for Justice Carl W. Anderson, Ret., California Court of Appeal, Second District, and the Honorable Marshall Whitley, Alameda County Superior Court. Ms. Osterloh is a member of East Bay Trusts & Estates Lawyers, the California Bar Association, and American Bar Association.

RUTH A. PHELPS received her undergraduate degree in Mathematics from Immaculate Heart College in Los Angeles. She received her J.D. degree and her LL.M. (Taxation) from Loyola Law School. Mrs. Phelps is a Certified Elder Law attorney and a Certified Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Specialist. She has been named a Southern California Super Lawyer for 2005 to 2016. She is the past-President of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, a national organization of over 4300 elder law attorneys. She is a former member of the Executive Committee of the Trusts and Estates Section of the State Bar of California, former President of the Southern California Chapter of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, and a fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel. Mrs. Phelps is a 2007 Spirit of CEB recipient, and has contributed as an author and coauthor to numerous CEB estate planning publications, including California Trust Administration, California Powers of Attorney, and Drafting California Irrevocable Trusts. She was an adjunct professor at Loyola Law School, teaching Elder Law from 2005 to 2014.

LEONARD W. POLLARD II is a Senior Deputy in the Office of the San Diego County Counsel. He is a former executive committee member and current reporter of the State Bar Trusts and Estates Section. Mr. Pollard’s practice focuses both on probate and conservatorship administration, including related litigation. He received a B.A. in 1968 from the University of Kentucky and a J.D. in 1971 from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law.

NANCY BALDWIN REIMANN is a partner in the Tax and Estate Planning Practice Group in the Los Angeles office of Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP. Ms. Reimann received her Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Santa Clara (magna cum laude) and her J.D. from the University of California, Los Angeles, School of Law. Ms. Reimann’s areas of specialization include estate planning, the administration of trusts and probate estates, creditors’ rights analysis, loan documentation, and work-outs. She has lectured on various estate planning topics for the clinical department of the University of California, Los Angeles, School of Law and is a frequent speaker on the topic of creditors’ rights against trusts and probate estates. She served on the Executive Committee of the Los Angeles County Bar Trust & Estates Section for 9 years, including a term as Committee Chair. She currently serves on the Executive Committee of the California State Bar Trust & Estate Section. Ms. Reimann is a fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel.

PATRICK Z. RILEY is a sole practitioner in Oakland specializing in estate planning, probate and trust administration, and estate and gift taxation. Since 1997, Mr. Riley has been certified as a specialist in Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization. He received his B.A. cum laude in 1967 from Santa Clara University and his J.D. in 1970 from the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law. He is a member of the East Bay Estate Planning Council, the Southern Alameda County Estate Planning Council, and the Trusts and Estates sections of the Alameda County Bar Association and the State Bar of California.

CYNTHIA V. ROEHL is a shareholder in Roehl & Glowacki, P.C. in Laguna Hills. Her practice focuses on probate and trust administration, estate planning, probate and trust litigation, and conservatorships. Ms. Roehl received her B.A. cum laude in 1985 from the University of California, Irvine, and her J.D. magna cum laude in 1996 from the University of Houston. She was a research editor for the Houston Journal of International Law. Ms. Roehl is a member of the Trusts and Estates Section of the Orange County Bar Association and the State Bar of California. She is a past chair of the Trusts and Estates Section of the Orange County Bar Association.

JONATHAN L. ROSENBLOOM is a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley, and Northwestern University School of Law, where he was Articles Editor of the Northwestern Journal of International Law & Business. He is a partner in the law firm of Rosenbloom & Rosenbloom, LLP, where his practice focuses on estate planning and administration, conservatorship, and real estate and business law. He is the Vice-Chair of the Trusts and Estates Section of the Los Angeles County Bar Association and has coordinated the Los Angeles Superior Court Probate Department’s training programs for court-appointed counsel since 2003.

MARY M. RUDSER is a partner in Donahue Gallagher Woods LLP, where she specializes in estate planning, trust administration, and probate law. Ms. Rudser is a past Chair of the Trusts and Estates Section of the Alameda County Bar Association and a former Chair of its Trust Committee. She has also served two terms on the board of directors of the Alameda County Bar Association. In addition, she has served on multiple occasions as a court-appointed guardian ad litem for minors and conservatees. Before joining Donahue Gallagher Woods LLP, Ms. Rudser formed Stein, Rudser, Cohen & Magid LLP, and before that she was a partner in Brody & Satz and an associate at Miller, Starr & Regalia, all in Oakland. Ms. Rudser was admitted to the bar in 1981 in New York and in 1985 in California. She received her B.A. degree in English from Carleton College and an M.L.S. from the University of Maryland. She received her J.D. magna cum laude from Boston College Law School and an LL.M. in Taxation from New York University. She is a member of the California and New York state bars and the Alameda County Bar Association. She is also a member of the East Bay Tax Club and the East Bay Women’s Forum.

MARC L. SALLUS is a partner in Oldman, Cooley, Sallus, Birnberg Coleman & Gold LLP, in Encino. He went to the University of California, Hastings College of the Law. His undergraduate school was Claremont Men’s College. He was Chair of the Conference of Delegates of the Conference of California Bar Associations. He was the former chair of the Beverly Hills Bar Probate, Trust and Estate Planning Section. He served as President of the Beverly Hills Bar Association. He also served on the Executive Committee of the State Bar of California’s Trust and Estate Section and Los Angeles County Bar’s Trust and Estate Section and is the incoming chair. He is a Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel. He is a coauthor of the will contest chapters in CEB’s California Decedent Estate Practice, Vol. III and California Trust and Probate Litigation (Cal CEB). He has lectured on trust, estate, probate, and conservatorship matters to numerous bars and on behalf of CEB.

BART J. SCHENONE practices with Temmerman Cilley & Kohlmann, LLP, Danville, in the areas of estate planning, trust, and probate law, as well as in the related areas of real property and business law. He received his B.A. from Stanford University in 1971 and his J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School in 1974. Mr. Schenone is a certified specialist in Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law and a fellow with the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel.

MAY LEE TONG practices in Oakland. Her practice emphasizes estate planning, probate, and trust administration. She is certified as a specialist in Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law by the California Board of Legal Specialization. Ms. Tong graduated from Pomona College in 1970 and from Golden Gate University School of Law in 1983. She is admitted to practice in California and Hawaii. She is the current chair of the Executive Committee of the Trusts and Estates Section of the State Bar of California and has served as chair of two of its subcommittees: Educating Seniors and Incapacity.

JON R. VAUGHT is a partner in the firm of Vaught & Boutris, LLP, in Oakland. His practice is focused on counseling and litigation in tax, estate planning, probate and trust administration, and asset protection. Mr. Vaught received a B.A. degree with honors from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1981; a J.D. degree from the University of California, Davis, School of Law in 1984; and an LL.M. degree in Tax Law from Golden Gate University School of Law in 1994. Mr. Vaught is certified as a specialist in both Taxation Law and Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization and is currently serving a -year term as an Advisory Commissioner to the California Board of Legal Specialization Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law. Mr. Vaught is an adjunct professor at Golden Gate University School of Law’s LL.M. Tax Program and an adjunct professor at the University of San Francisco law School’s LL.M. Taxation Program. Mr. Vaught is currently serving as a judge pro-tem with the Alameda County Superior Court, Probate Department and often serves as a court appointed referee, estate administrator, trustee, guardian at litem, and expert witness. He is also a member of the Board of Directors of Legal Assistance for Seniors.

MARC WAHRHAFTIG, with the Law Offices of Marc Wahrhaftig in Oakland, specializes in estate planning, probate, trust law, and related areas. He received his B.A. in 1986 from the University of California, Los Angeles, and his J.D. in 1992 from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law. He chairs the Administration Committee of the Alameda County Bar Association Trusts and Estates Section and is also a member of the East Bay Estate Planning Council and the State Bar of California Trusts and Estates Section. He is a regular volunteer for the Lawyers in the Library program and has served as a Judge Pro Tem in small claims court. He is also an active classical musician. In addition to his work on this book, he has assisted with editing California Trust Administration (2d ed Cal CEB) and California Durable Powers of Attorney (Cal CEB).

CHARLES P. WOLFF is a member of Evans, Latham & Campisi in San Francisco. He specializes in probate and trust litigation. He received his B.A. from Wesleyan University in 1974 and his J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School in 1977. He is a fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel and a former member of the Executive Committee of the Trusts and Estates Section of the State Bar of California and former chair of the section’s Ethics Committee.

ERIC R. YAMAMOTO, of the Law Offices of Eric R. Yamamoto in West Los Angeles, focuses his practice on probate, conservatorship, and trust matters. Mr. Yamamoto received his B.S. from the University of Southern California School of Business in 1971 and his J.D. from Loyola University School of Law in 1974. He belongs to the Trusts and Estates sections of the Santa Monica Bar Association, the Los Angeles County Bar Association, and the State Bar of California. He is a co-chair of the Santa Monica Bar Association Probate, Trust and Estate Planning Section. Mr. Yamamoto has taught at the University of West Los Angeles School of Law and at UCLA Extension and has been a speaker at numerous seminars sponsored by the Los Angeles County Bar Association. He periodically acts as an interviewer for the California State Controller’s Advisory Probate Referee.

About the 2018 Update Authors

ALEX R. BORDEN, update author of chapters 10, 21, and 22. See bio in About the Authors.

SARAH S. BROOMER, update author of chapter 15, is an attorney with the law firm of Hinojosa & Forer LLP in Los Angeles. Her practice emphasizes estate planning, conservatorships, and trust and estate litigation. She received her B.A. degree in Political Science in 2004 from the University of California, Berkeley, and her J.D. in 2008 from Southwestern University School of Law. Mrs. Broomer was a judicial extern for the Honorable Aviva K. Bobb (Ret.), the supervising probate judge of the Los Angeles Superior Court. She is on the executive committee of the Beverly Hills Bar Association Trusts and Estates section.

LEIGHTON A. BURREY, update author of chapter 32, is an associate at Hartog, Baer & Hand, PC, Orinda, and focuses his practice on domestic and international estate, gift, and income tax planning. He assists clients with estate, income, and gift tax mitigation strategies, including domestic and offshore tax compliance, business succession planning, estate and trust administration, and multigenerational wealth preservation. Mr. Burrey has also advised high-net-worth individuals with sophisticated tax and wealth transfer planning and implementation. Mr. Burrey received his B.A. in 2001 from the University of California, Davis, and his J.D. in 2010 from the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law. He earned an LL.M. in Taxation with honors in 2013 from Golden Gate University School of Law.

STEFANIE S. CUTLER, update author of chapter 9, has been employed at Bloom & Ruttenberg, Los Angeles, since 2007. Her practice focuses on trust and estate and fiduciary litigation as well as trust and estate administration. She also handles contested and noncontested conservatorship and guardianship matters. She earned two B.A. degrees from the University of Southern California in 2004 in Political Science and Environmental Studies. She is the current Chair of the Executive Committee of the Trust & Estate Committee of the Beverly Hills Bar Association. In addition, she serves as a coeditor of the Trusts & Estates Bulletin and is a member of the executive committee for the Trusts and Estates Section of the Los Angeles County Bar Association.

RACHEL DODSON, update coauthor of chapter 31, is an associate at Roisman Henel + Adams LLP in Oakland. Her practice focuses on estate planning, trust administration, and probate. She often advises trustees and beneficiaries involved in contentious administrations regarding their rights and duties. Ms. Dodson earned her B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania and earned her J.D. from the University of Washington School of Law. She earned her Master of Public Administration from the Evans School of Public Policy and Governance at the University of Washington. Ms. Dodson has been selected by her peers as one of Northern California’s “Rising Stars” from 2015.

DAVID J. ELEFANT, update author of chapter 13. See bio in About the Authors.

LINDA ESHOE, update coauthor of chapter 6, is a Senior Deputy County Counsel with the Office of the Los Angeles County Counsel and currently practices in probate. She previously specialized in litigation and employment matters. Ms. Eshoe received her B.S. degree from the University of Southern California and her J.D. degree from Southwestern University School of Law. She belongs to the Trusts and Estates sections of the California State Bar and the Los Angeles County Bar Association, in addition to the Litigation, Inn of Courts, and Labor and Employment sections of the State Bar of California and the Los Angeles County Bar Association.

ANDREA GEE, update author of chapters 20 and 28. See bio in About the Authors.

MARY F. GILLICK, update author of chapter 29. See bio in About the Authors.

PETA-GAY GORDON, update author of chapter 12, is an associate at Oldman, Cooley, Sallus, Birnberg & Coleman, LLP, in Encino. Ms. Gordon received her J.D. from the University of Southern California. She specializes in trusts and estates administration and litigation, guardianships, family law, and conservatorships.

RICHARD A. GORINI, update coauthor of chapters 27 and 28. See bio in About the Authors.

MARGARET M. HAND, update author of chapter 14. See bio in About the Authors.

ANN C. HARRIS, update author of chapter 33. See bio in About the Authors.

KELLY L. HINOJOSA, update author of chapter 30, is an attorney with the law firm of Hinojosa & Forer LLP in Los Angeles. Her practice focuses on all aspects of fiduciary, estate, trust, and conservatorship litigation, as well as appeals. Ms. Hinojosa received her B.A. from the University of Michigan in 2005 and her J.D. from Loyola Law School, Los Angeles, in 2008. She is a member of the Trust and Estates sections of the Beverly Hills Bar Association and the Los Angeles County Bar Association.

M. JEAN JOHNSTON, update author of chapter 4, is a partner at Johnston, Kinney & Zulaica LLP in San Francisco. Ms. Johnston received her B.A. from the University of California at Irvine, her J.D. from Hastings College of Law, University of California, and has her LL.M in Taxation from Golden Gate University. She is a member of the State Bar of California, Taxation and Estate Planning Sections; BALIF; and the Horizons Foundation Advisory Board. Ms. Johnston has written several papers on tax and estate planning and authored “Income, Gift and Estate Tax Considerations for Domestic Partnerships” for the CEB publication “California Domestic Partnerships.” She has also served as consultant on other CEB publications.

CRAIG L. JUDSON, update coauthor of chapters 16 and 17. See bio in About the Authors.

LAUREN C. LIEBES, update coauthor of chapter 2, is an associate with Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP in Los Angeles. Ms. Liebes received her B.S. from Boston University and her J.D. from Southwestern Law School. She also received an LL.M. in Taxation and a Certificate in Estate Planning from Georgetown University Law Center. Her individual and family wealth planning practice includes estate planning, probate, estate and gift tax, and trust administration matters.

AMY L. McEVOY, update coauthor of chapter 2. See bio in About the Authors.

SHARON M. NAGLE, update coauthor of chapters 16 and 17, is an attorney with the law firm of Bold, Polisner, Maddow, Nelson, & Judson in Walnut Creek. Her practice involves probate and trust litigation. She received her B.A. in Literature from the University of California, Santa Cruz, and her J.D. from the University of San Diego.

ANNE BRUNER NASH, update author of chapter 31. See bio in About the Authors.

GENEVIEVE S. ORTA, update author of chapter 8. See bio in About the Authors.

RUTH A. PHELPS, update author of chapters 24 and 25. See bio in About the Authors.

NANCY BALDWIN REIMANN, update coauthor of chapter 2. See bio in About the Authors.

MARC L. SALLUS, update author of chapter 26. See bio in About the Authors.

ADAM L. STRELTZER, update author of chapters 5 and 23, practices in the Century City area of Los Angeles. Mr. Streltzer is a trust, estate, and fiduciary litigator with a special emphasis in creditor rights and judgment enforcement. His practice focuses on litigation concerning the rights, duties, money, and property of the deceased, incompetent, spendthrift, and bankrupt. Mr. Streltzer received his B.A. degree from San Diego State University in 1991 and his J.D. degree from the University of the Pacific School of Law in 1994. He is a member of the Trust and Estates sections of the Beverly Hills Bar Association and Los Angeles County Bar Association, a member of the Commercial Law League of America, and a participant in the Los Angeles County Superior Court’s Probate Volunteer Panel (PVP) program.

CATHERINE SWAFFORD, update coauthor of chapter 29, is an associate at Withers Bergman LLP in San Diego. She practices exclusively in trust, estate, and fiduciary litigation. Ms. Swafford graduated cum laude from the University of California, Los Angeles, with a B.S. degree and obtained her J.D. degree from Pepperdine University School of Law. She has experience litigating cases from the initial stage of filing a petition through trial and post-judgment.

NATHAN TALEI, update author of chapter 18, is an associate at Oldman, Cooley, Sallus, Birnberg & Coleman, LLP, in Encino. Mr. Talei received his B.A. degree in Psychology in 2007 from the University of California, Santa Barbara and his J.D. degree from the Pepperdine University School of Law in 2011. Mr. Talei specializes in probate litigation, estate planning, trusts, conservatorships, and guardianship matters and has extensive experience with Intellectual Property litigation and prosecution.

SARAH TALEI, update author of chapter 3, is an associate at Oldman, Cooley, Sallus, Birnberg & Coleman, LLP, in Encino. Ms. Talei graduated from the University of Southern California with a B.S. degree in Business Administration and obtained her J.D. degree from Whittier Law School, where she specialized in children’s rights. She was an extern at the Children’s Law Center and the Probate Department of the Los Angeles Superior Court. She has served as the Secretary and Treasurer on the Barrister Board of the Beverly Hills Bar Association and is a 2005 recipient of the Barristers Lawrence J. Blake Award for dedicated service. She is also a member of the Los Angeles County Bar Association, the San Fernando Valley Bar Association, and the Iranian Bar Association.

VICKI THORBURN, update coauthor of chapters 27 and 28, is a freelance paralegal specializing in the areas of probate, estate planning, trust administration, fiduciary accounting, fiduciary tax, and conservatorships. She is also with the firm of Boskovich, Gorini & Vanasse, LLP, in San Jose. She has worked for attorneys specializing in these areas for more than 30 years, and she taught classes for the Santa Clara University Paralegal Institute for approximately 20 years. She has also taught classes for Santa Clara University School of Law and for the Santa Clara County Legal Secretaries Association. Ms. Thorburn is an author for Handling a Probate (Cal CEB Action Guide). Ms. Thorburn has been a guest speaker, panelist, and lecturer for CEB; the Santa Clara University School of Law; Santa Clara County Bar Association; Professional Fiduciary Association of California; Bay Area Legal Secretaries Forum; Paralegal Association of Santa Clara County; and the National Association for Women in Banking.

MAY LEE TONG, update author of chapter 19. See bio in About the Authors.

JON R. VAUGHT, update author of chapter 34. See bio in About the Authors.

MARC WAHRHAFTIG, update author of chapter 7. See bio in About the Authors.

ERIC R. YAMAMOTO, update author of chapters 6 and 9. See bio in About the Authors.

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