Legal Question in Wills and Trusts in Wisconsin
My mother's mother died last year in Wisconsin. One of my mother's sisters in Texas was named executor. My mother (lives in Florida) was not included in the will as an heir/beneficiary. My mother received documents from the decedents bank (in Wisconsin) that the executor said my mother had to fill out so that the account could be closed. My mother filled the forms out, had them notarized, and mailed them to the bank. Two weeks later she received a cashiers check from the bank with a letter stating that this was her portion of the account. The executor is demanding the return of the money. Does the executor have the right to claim funds that have already been paid out? If the bank made an error, what is my mother's liability? Is the money hers to spend and if she does spend the money can the executor sue her?
1 Answer from Attorneys
Your mother needs a lawyer. I don't know the reason for the refund, but even if it is valid, many people would await receipt of a court order before turning it over, since the question of legal entitlement to the funds is far from obvious. Meanwhile I would recommend that she not spend it pending the outcome, or see if this dispute can be resolved. Sometimes, financial accounts are not part of probate estates.
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