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  1. #1
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    Sep 2013
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    Default Contesting a Designated Beneficiary

    My wife's sister recently past. My wife is the only surviving family member and is the administrator of the estate.
    The company managing the IRA account was contacted and asked to provide the beneficiaries, if any. It was found to have a beneficiary. It is a former friend that the sister hadn't spoken to, nor had any relationship with, in over 20 years. Plus another individual my wife had never heard of. The sister had worked with one of the two we knew. Both individuals were fellow employees/friends of the sister at a bank that has long been out of business.

    The sister never changed the beneficiary in spite of living with her boyfriend of 15 years. The boyfriend never knew of her assets till after she had past. Common law does not trump blood-relative in NJ. We want to right some wrongs here because the two struggled paycheck to paycheck. We want to see much of this money go to the boyfriend. The IRA is valued in the low five figures.

    My question is: What obstacles lie in the path of the contesting and ultimately, the striking of said beneficiaries from this IRA?

    Thank you in advance to all that are kind to provide professional guidance on this matter.
    My question involves estate proceedings in the state of: New Jersey

  2. #2
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    Sep 2013
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    833

    Default Re: Contesting a Beneficiary

    Quote Quoting tmbipa57
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    My wife's sister recently past. My wife is the only surviving family member and is the administrator of the estate.
    The company managing the IRA account was contacted and asked to provide the beneficiaries, if any. It was found to have a beneficiary. It is a former friend that the sister hadn't spoken to, nor had any relationship with, in over 20 years. Plus another individual my wife had never heard of. The sister had worked with one of the two we knew. Both individuals were fellow employees/friends of the sister at a bank that has long been out of business.

    The sister never changed the beneficiary in spite of living with her boyfriend of 15 years. The boyfriend never knew of her assets till after she had past. Common law does not trump blood-relative in NJ. We want to right some wrongs here because the two struggled paycheck to paycheck. We want to see much of this money go to the boyfriend. The IRA is valued in the low five figures.

    My question is: What obstacles lie in the path of the contesting and ultimately, the striking of said beneficiaries from this IRA?

    Thank you in advance to all that are kind to provide professional guidance on this matter.
    My question involves estate proceedings in the state of: New Jersey
    What legal reason do you think a court should violate a deceased's written instructions for what you think she would have wanted?

    This is a known problem even when a person gets married and forgets to change his beneficiary. Sometimes there can be a marital estate claim. There is no such claim here because boyfriend was not married to the deceased. http://www.dol.gov/ebsa/publications/2012ACreport1.html

    I think you will be unable to do what you want.

  3. #3
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    Mar 2013
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    17,285

    Default Re: Contesting a Beneficiary

    Quote Quoting tmbipa57
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    What obstacles lie in the path of the contesting and ultimately, the striking of said beneficiaries from this IRA?
    What obstacles?

    A very strong brick wall.

    The IRA goes to the beneficiary. Period.

  4. #4
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    Sep 2013
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    6

    Default Re: Contesting a Beneficiary

    It's that cut and dry. Even though it's because she never got around to changing it. She was an extreme procrastinator/hoarder. We don't even know how to find them or identify the one we know nothing about.

    - - - Updated - - -

    - - - Updated - - -

    Because she suffered from a mental disorder that would have rendered her incapable of even being aware she had to change it. She may have even forgot she had a IRA.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Contesting a Beneficiary

    It's a shame she didn't update her beneficiary but arguing, "I think she would have changed it had she thought of it," isn't going to get you anywhere in court.

  6. #6
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    Sep 2013
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    Default Re: Contesting a Beneficiary

    Well we have no idea on how to find them. No SS#'s. Both could be deceased for all we know. What happens if we can't locate either one?

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Contesting a Beneficiary

    By "them" you mean the designated beneficiaries? If they don't make claims for the money with the financial institutions, it will typically end up here.

  8. #8
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    Sep 2013
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    Default Re: Contesting a Beneficiary

    Yes, in that "they" meaning beneficiaries. So then it sits there for a predetermined time span? What is the end game in this type of situation? What is the role or responsibility of the estate administrator at that point?

    - - - Updated - - -

    So to finish this thread from all the advice, this is where it ends:
    Mr. Knowitall advice led to - if not claimed by the beneficiaries it goes to the state's Unclaimed Property Administration.

    http://www.unclaimedproperty.nj.gov/

    http://www.missingmoney.com/Main/ClaimEligibility.cfm

    Then these options are left to claim the property:

    This claim information statement below came from the 2nd link.
    __________________________________________________ _____________________________

    "I am a friend or relative of the reported property owner"...

    If the friend or relative listed as the "Reported Property Owner" IS deceased, only a surviving spouse, estate administrator, or court verified heir has the legal authority to place a claim on the property. Documentation proving the claimant's authority will be required.

    If the friend or relative listed as the "Reported Property Owner" is NOT deceased, only someone with legal guardianship or Power of Attorney over the "Reported Property Owner" may file claim on the property.

    Thanks everyone for your help in my effort to understand this situation my wife and I are in.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
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    833

    Default Re: Contesting a Beneficiary

    Quote Quoting tmbipa57
    View Post
    Yes, in that "they" meaning beneficiaries. So then it sits there for a predetermined time span? What is the end game in this type of situation? What is the role or responsibility of the estate administrator at that point? - - - Updated - - - So to finish this thread from all the advice, this is where it ends: Mr. Knowitall advice led to - if not claimed by the beneficiaries it goes to the state's Unclaimed Property Administration. http://www.unclaimedproperty.nj.gov/ http://www.missingmoney.com/Main/ClaimEligibility.cfm Then these options are left to claim the property: This claim information statement below came from the 2nd link. __________________________________________________ _____________________________ "I am a friend or relative of the reported property owner"... If the friend or relative listed as the "Reported Property Owner" IS deceased, only a surviving spouse, estate administrator, or court verified heir has the legal authority to place a claim on the property. Documentation proving the claimant's authority will be required. If the friend or relative listed as the "Reported Property Owner" is NOT deceased, only someone with legal guardianship or Power of Attorney over the "Reported Property Owner" may file claim on the property. Thanks everyone for your help in my effort to understand this situation my wife and I are in.
    If the beneficiary is alive at the time of death of IRA owner, then it is his money and you cannot file a claim even if it escheats to the state. If the beneficiary predeceased the IRA owner, then you need to read the IRA trustee agreement to find out where the money goes.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
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    6

    Default Re: Contesting a Beneficiary

    Is that a IRS national procedural flow chart of rules you are referring from? Or, does every state have their own governing rules on IRA disbursement?

    If there is no wiggle room no matter how wrong that an almost complete stranger remains the beneficiary, then who cares what happens to it. Just let it die on the vine.

    I'm sure you read the excerpts of the site, why isn't that discussed in those two links?

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