Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate

Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate

 Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate

Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate – Forms

There are a number of Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate forms which are now freely available on the Internet from various sources.

However, while some of the forms are self explanatory, and appear to be fairly simple, the court personnel responsible for the management of Hennepin County Probate filings have particular requirements – some of which are unique to Hennepin County Minnesota.

Such requirements apply equally:

  • to licensed Minnesota attorneys, and
  • to persons attempting to complete a do-it-yourself Hennepin County Probate proceeding.

If an applicant for a Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate proceeding cannot satisfy all of the particular requirements established by the court personnel responsible for the management of such proceedings:

  • the Application can be denied, and
  • the applicant will be required to petition for a formal probate proceeding in Hennepin County Minnesota – which can be much more demanding.

Hennepin County – Terms and Procedures

There are glossaries of general probate terms, and descriptions of procedures and documents relating to the administration of Hennepin County Probate estates, which are available on the Internet from:

However, such web sites will not generally provide detailed instructions with respect to specific probate procedures and document contents which are required by the Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate court personnel.

Hennepin County – Prerequisites

One prerequisite to the filing of an Application for the Informal Appointment of a Personal Representative of a decedent’s estate, and/or for the Informal Probate of the decedent’s Will, is the absence of, or the proper resolution of, any Demands for Notice which may have been filed in the Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate court records.

A Demand for Notice is a document filed in the Hennepin County Probate court record – typically by a creditor wanting to put an applicant for the Informal Appointment of a Personal Representative of a decedent’s estate, and/or for the Informal Probate of the decedent’s Will, on notice that there is a potential claim on the horizon against the estate.

The court personnel responsible for the management of Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate proceedings will want to see evidence that the legal requirements with respect to any such Demands for Notice have been properly addressed.

Hennepin County – Commencement

A Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate proceeding is commenced by the filing of an Application for the Informal Appointment of a Personal Representative of a decedent’s estate, and/or for the Informal Probate of the decedent’s Will.

The court personnel responsible for the management of Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate proceedings have particular requirements with respect to the contents of any such Application – which if not met – can result in:

  • the rejection of the Application, and
  • the termination of the applicant’s right to apply for the Informal Appointment of a Personal Representative of the decedent’s estate, and/or for the Informal Probate of the decedent’s Will.

One such requirement is a proper identification of all of the interested parties in the estate.

Another such requirement involves a declaration as to the survivorship of certain family members of the decedent – which declaration can seem rather complicated to persons who are unfamiliar with such issues.

A third requirement involves the manner in which the decedent actually signed any Will which is filed with the Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate court for probate.

In most Minnesota counties, the form of Will signature would perhaps not be significant.

However, the manner in which the decedent actually signed his or her Will is important to the Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate court personnel.

Hennepin County – Priority for Appointment of the Personal Representative

An applicant for the Informal Appointment of a Personal Representative of a decedent’s estate in a Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate proceeding must either have:

  • a statutory priority for such appointment, or
  • obtain the written nomination of all persons having an equal or greater priority for such appointment.

Any required written nominations must be filed in the Hennepin County Probate court record for the applicant can proceed.

Hennepin County – Filing of the Original Will

Providing that the Application for the Informal Appointment of a Personal Representative of a decedent’s estate, and/or for the Informal Probate of the decedent’s Will, has met the requirements of the Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate court Registrar, the applicant must then file with the Hennepin County Minnesota Probate court the original of any Will document – within seven days after the filing of the Application.

Any failure to file the original Will document within seven days can result in the rejection of the Application for the Informal Appointment of a Personal Representative of the decedent’s estate, and/or for the Informal Probate of the decedent’s Will.

Hennepin County – Telephone Interview with the Probate Registrar

One unique requirement with respect to Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate proceedings is the necessity of a telephone interview with the Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate Court Registrar.

From the perspective of the Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate court, some of the objectives of the interview with the Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate Registrar include:

  • determining whether all of the requirements for the commencement of a Hennepin County Probate filing have been met,
  • determining whether the proposed personal representative is sufficiently competent and trustworthy to be granted letters of authority from the court; and
  • providing certain directives to the applicant regarding any additional requirements which must be satisfied before court letters of authority will be issued.

Obtaining a successful result from an interview with the Hennepin County Informal Probate Registrar can be challenging even for experienced probate practitioners.

I suspect that obtaining successful results from such interviews would be even more challenging for applicants, or attorneys, who are new to the Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate process.

Hennepin County – Notice of Probate and Appointment

Assuming that an Application for the Informal Appointment of a Personal Representative of a decedent’s estate, and/or for the Informal Probate of the decedent’s Will, satisfies the requirements of court personnel responsible for the management of Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate filings, the next hurdle which must be overcome is the proper preparation and filing of a Notice of the Informal Appointment of the Personal Representative of the decedent’s estate, and/or Notice of the Informal Probate of the decedent’s Will.

The court personnel responsible for the management of Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate proceedings have particular requirements with respect to the contents of such Notices – which if not satisfied – can result in the court’s refusal to issue Letters Testamentary, or Letters of Administration.

Hennepin County – Publication of Notice of Probate and Appointment

Assuming that an applicant’s Notice of the Informal Appointment of a Personal Representative of the decedent’s estate, and/or Notice of the Informal Probate of the decedent’s Will, satisfies the requirements of the Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate Registrar, the next requirement which must be satisfied is the publication of the Notice in an authorized legal newspaper – of which there are at least three in Hennepin County Minnesota.

The Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate court Registrar will expect the applicant to satisfy the publication of Notice requirements.

Hennepin County – Mailing of Notice of Probate and Appointment

Assuming that the publication requirements with respect to an applicant’s Notice of the Informal Appointment of a Personal Representative of the decedent’s estate, and/or Notice of the Informal Probate of the decedent’s Will, have been satisfied, the next requirements which must be satisfied are:

  • the provision of the Notice to all of the interested parties in the estate, and
  • the filing with the Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate court of an appropriate Affidavit of Mailing regarding the provision of such Notices.

The Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate court Registrar will expect the applicant to satisfy the above identified mailing of Notice requirements.

Hennepin County – Mailing of a Special Notice to Spouse and/or Children Appointment

Assuming that the Affidavit of Mailing requirements with respect to an applicant’s Notice of the Informal Appointment of a Personal Representative of the decedent’s estate, and/or Notice of the Informal Probate of the decedent’s Will, have been met, the next requirements which may be required to be satisfied are the provision of a special notice to the decedent’s surviving spouse – and sometimes to the decedent’s surviving children – regarding certain statutory rights available to such persons.

The special Notice to Surviving Spouse is apparently required in every Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate court proceeding in which there is a surviving spouse.

A separate special Notice to Surviving Children may also be required – at the discretion of the Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate court Registrar.

In addition to the provision of:

  • the required Notice to Surviving Spouse and Notice to Surviving Children, and
  • copies of applicable Minnesota statutes,

appropriate Affidavits of Mailing regarding the provision of such Notices, and copies of applicable Minnesota statutes, must be filed with the Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate court.

The Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate court Registrar will expect the applicant to satisfy the above identified mailing of Notice requirements.

Hennepin County – Creditor Claims

Assuming that the Notice to Surviving Spouse and the Notice to Surviving Children requirements are satisfied, and court letters of authority have been issued to the personal representative of the estate, the proper handling of creditor claims – including State of Minnesota Medical Assistance claims for reimbursement of expenses paid on behalf of the decedent – is one area that can be a minefield for the unwary.

A Minnesota Personal Representative will need to be proactive, and must know how to:

  • obtain the necessary information regarding creditor claims which have been filed, and
  • properly respond to any claims which are filed or presented.

Hennepin County – Certificate of Representation

A Minnesota attorney filing an Application for the Informal Appointment of a Personal Representative of a decedent’s estate, and/or for the Informal Probate of the decedent’s Will, must also be prepared to file a Certificate of Representation – identifying certain relevant factors regarding the applicant, and the applicant’s legal counsel.

Hennepin County – Income Tax Issues

Income tax issues are at least a theoretical concern for Minnesota Personal Representatives in every estate, because of the personal liability that the Minnesota Personal Representative may have for any unpaid income taxes of the decedent.

Hennepin County – Real Estate Title Issues

Real estate title issues which arise due to the death of the decedent are clearly one area which may require professional legal assistance.

The decedent’s title in real estate may have been owned in fee simple, or the decedent may have held a terminable interest, such as:

The decedent may have held title as a tenant in common, or as a joint tenant, together with other owners.

The decedent’s interest in Minnesota real property may also be subject to a Medical Assistance lien for reimbursement of a Minnesota County’s payment of Medical Assistance benefits on behalf of the decedent.

Upon the sale of real property by a Minnesota Personal Representative of an estate, certified copies of probate court documents must be obtained for the closing.

All such situations would require legal analysis, and an appropriate response.

Hennepin County – Registered Torrens Property

If Minnesota real property of the estate has been registered as Torrens Property, the approval of the County Examiner of Titles must be obtained in order for a Minnesota Personal Representative’s Deed to be recorded.

The average Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate court do-it-yourselfer may not have the legal knowledge to know how to address such a situation, and some title companies will defer to the client’s Minnesota probate attorney in order to satisfy any title requirements relating to such issues.

Hennepin County – Closing an Estate

Properly closing a Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate court proceeding is another area ripe for confusion, with potential opportunities for malfeasance claims being made against the Personal Representative of the estate.

However, there are several available probate closing procedures which may either limit, or eliminate, liability for the Personal Representative of the estate, which may not be well known.

Hennepin County Probate – Final Accounts

Preparing a proper Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate court Final Account, and being able to get the actual cash on hand to balance with the accounting record of cash that should be available for distribution, is difficult enough for an experienced probate practitioner – and would be a daunting task for the uninitiated.

Personal Representatives administering their first probate estate may perhaps have little chance of knowing the information which would be necessary in order to have the actual cash on hand balance with the accounting record of cash that should be available for distribution.

Preparation of a proper Final Account is not necessarily intuitive, and requires:

  • the skill of a bookkeeper,
  • the knowledge of a tax accountant,
  • the insight of an auditor, and
  • the experience of a probate attorney.

Hennepin County Probate – Other Issues

Certainly, some persons facing simple Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate situations may be able to commence probate proceedings without proper legal assistance.

However, many Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate estates are sufficiently complex that it would be best to obtain professional assistance from the beginning.

In addition, inevitably situations will arise which are not addressed:

  • by the freely available forms, or
  • by the general information which is available on the Internet.

Bonding requirements, supervised estates, distributions to minor beneficiaries, court reporting responsibilities, and disclaimer opportunities all identify areas with which the typical Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate do-it-yourselfer would be unfamiliar, and perhaps unable to properly address.

Hennepin County Probate – Obtaining Assistance

If you have commenced a Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate proceeding on your own, and have discovered that you may need help completing the process, I invite you to contact Minnesota probate attorney Gary C. Dahle for professional assistance.

Minnesota probate attorney Gary C. Dahle may be able to assist you with devising a solution to your do-it-yourself Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate situation.

The Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate court personnel:

  • are not available to provide applicants with legal advice, and
  • may not be willing to help applicants with filling out the forms, as there are many legal issues associated with the information identified on the Application for the Informal Appointment of a Personal Representative of a decedent’s estate, and/or for the Informal Probate of the decedent’s Will, and related documents.

Hennepin County Probate – Representing Minnesota Personal Representatives

Minnesota probate attorney Gary C. Dahle has been the attorney of record for personal representatives of estates in Anoka County, Clay County, Chisago County, Dakota County, Hennepin County, Nobles County, Pine County, Ramsey County, Rice County, Renville County, St. Louis County, and Washington County in Minnesota.

Since many Minnesota counties have their own peculiarities regarding the manner in which they will address certain issues, retaining professional assistance is important in order to address such County by County peculiarities

Hennepin County Probate – Representing Minnesota Beneficiaries

Minnesota probate attorney Gary C. Dahle has also represented beneficiaries of estates who resided in states from Massachusetts to California.

If you are a beneficiary of an estate being administered in a Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate proceeding who is not also the personal representative of the estate, you may want to retain Minnesota attorney Gary C. Dahle to advise you as to:

  • your rights as a beneficiary, and
  • when you can expect to receive your share of the estate.

However, if Minnesota probate attorney Gary C. Dahle already represents the personal representative of an estate being administered in a Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate proceeding, he cannot also represent the beneficiaries of the estate – since that would create a conflict of interest.

If you are an eligible estate beneficiary residing in Minnesota, or anywhere else, contact Minnesota probate attorney Gary C. Dahle for assistance with receiving your proper share of the estate.

Conclusion – Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate

If you have need of assistance with any aspect of a Hennepin County Minnesota Informal Probate proceeding, contact attorney Gary C. Dahle, at 763-780-8390, or gary@dahlelaw.com.

Gary C. Dahle is also licensed in North Dakota.

For information on North Dakota Probate law, see http://www.dahlelawnorthdakota.com/

For information on North Dakota Transfer on Death Deeds, see also http://northdakotatransferondeathdeeds.com/

Copyright 2017 – All Rights Reserved

Gary C. Dahle – Attorney at Law

2704 Mounds View Blvd., Mounds View, MN 55112

Phone:  763-780-8390    Fax: 763-780-1735

gary@dahlelaw.com

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Information provided herein is only for general informational and educational purposes. Minnesota laws addressing access to safe deposit boxes involve many complex legal issues. If you have a specific legal problem about which you are seeking advice,  consult with a Minnesota attorney of your choice.

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Links to Minnesota Probate Records

Minnesota Department of Health – Death Records Index – 1997 to Present:  http://www.health.state.mn.us/divs/chs/osr/DecdIndex/dthSearch.cfm

Minnesota Historical Society – Death Records; 1904 – 2001: http://www.mnhs.org/people/deathrecords

Minnesota Department of Health – Birth Certificateshttp://www.health.state.mn.us/divs/chs/osr/birth.html

Minnesota Historical Society – Birth Records: http://www.mnhs.org/people/birthrecords

Minnesota Marriage Recordshttps://moms.mn.gov/