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  1. #1
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    Nov 2015
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    Default Settling an Estate's Debts With its Creditors

    I am trying to help get some info for settling an estate in Atlanta, GA, the decedent did not leave a will and the executor status will have be be transferred ( there is no dispute here ). Credit card debt is around 10k. Assets are around $20k and they also have a home ( the mortage was around 200k but the current market value is around 250k ). I did talk to a law firm and they quoted $1500 for settling the estate. So my questions are:

    1) how much should it take to settle with the creditors?
    2) was told by the firm to not even talk to the creditors. Given the low amount of money owed out ( the amount is spread out between 5+ cards ), is it likely the creditors won't bother?
    3) I read somewhere that it was better to settle with creditors prior to probate, is there any credence to this?
    4) Given that this isn't a complex estate and there are no disputes, would handling it without a lawyer be entirely out of the question? Unfortunately though I live in a different state. Is there any way to bypass probate?

    Thanks in advance

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
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    Default Re: Settling an Estate's Debts With its Creditors

    Quote Quoting StanWinston
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    how much should it take to settle with the creditors?
    That will depend on the creditor. Creditors prefer to receive all of the money that is owed to them.
    Quote Quoting StanWinston
    was told by the firm to not even talk to the creditors. Given the low amount of money owed out ( the amount is spread out between 5+ cards ), is it likely the creditors won't bother?
    If you are appointed as the executor of the estate, you will need to follow the law -- including giving proper notice to creditors.
    Quote Quoting StanWinston
    I read somewhere that it was better to settle with creditors prior to probate, is there any credence to this?
    If you want to try to settle the state through the small estate procedure, you can try to get all creditors to consent to that procedure before you file your petition; but as far as they're concerned, you're a random guy off the street, so odds are they're going to want to see the letters appointing you as personal representative or be served with the small estate petition before they agree to waive any part of the money that they are owed.
    Quote Quoting StanWinston
    Given that this isn't a complex estate and there are no disputes, would handling it without a lawyer be entirely out of the question?
    That's a question you're going to have to answer for yourself, based upon your own capacity and your willingness to travel to Georgia as required.
    Quote Quoting StanWinston
    Is there any way to bypass probate?
    You can explore whether the estate can qualify for the small estate procedure.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
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    7,056

    Default Re: Settling an Estate's Debts With its Creditors

    Quote Quoting StanWinston
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    1) how much should it take to settle with the creditors?
    The amount that is owed or any negotiated amount.

    Quote Quoting StanWinston
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    2) was told by the firm to not even talk to the creditors. Given the low amount of money owed out ( the amount is spread out between 5+ cards ), is it likely the creditors won't bother?
    No. A creditor may make claim for debt and will likely do so. They are entitled to be paid from the estate once notified that the estate is in probate.

    Quote Quoting StanWinston
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    3) I read somewhere that it was better to settle with creditors prior to probate, is there any credence to this?
    Not really. The executor/trix has the authority to negotiate any settlement of debt for the estate.

    Quote Quoting StanWinston
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    4) Given that this isn't a complex estate and there are no disputes, would handling it without a lawyer be entirely out of the question? Unfortunately though I live in a different state. Is there any way to bypass probate?
    I believe that the small estate probate in GA is $10,000. So you would need to file for probate with the court as it appears that the estate is more than that amount.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
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    2

    Default Re: Settling an Estate's Debts With its Creditors

    Thanks for the help/input. I'm looking through lawyers now. ;-)

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