Anonymous asked in Business & FinancePersonal Finance · 4 weeks ago

My dad died without a will in Washington state and has very few personal assets . What’s next? ?

Sadly on Monday my unmarried dad passed away. I’m grieving and lost on a lot of things. He lived on social security, less than 3k a month. In a very modest apartment he was renting. He has two very old cars which I have the titles to. He doesn’t have much property of any monetary value within the home aside from regular household items and clothing. He has a bank account and I haven’t found any statements to attest to it’s balance. I don’t want any money, I just want to get through this time somehow. We only have until the end of December to get things sorted and have all his things vacated from his home. I don’t know where to begin. I know he has some  debt because he left an envelope with creditor names and instructions to send his death certificate. 

Do I have to get a lawyer to gain access to his accounts and sell his cars and pay his bills? I. Don’t know what to do. Please help. 

7 Answers

  • Clive
    Lv 7
    2 weeks ago

    What does this have to do with personal finance?

  • Eva
    Lv 7
    4 weeks ago

    You need to file paperwork with the Surrogate Court in order to be named administrator of his estate. It will be a more difficult process since he didn't have a will. You need to notify social security immediately and may have to return the amount of the last check he received. You may need to talk to an attorney to at least get the process started or instruct you on what to do.

  • 4 weeks ago

    You need to post a death certificate in the paper (hopefully free, unless you want to eulogize him in the paper). And, although trite, start with Google for insight and answers so that you can be productive (less cost) when talking to a lawyer or legal aid. Condolences.

  • Anonymous
    4 weeks ago

    Id just sell the cars & sign your dads name. I would not worry about his bills. No idea on the bank accounts.

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  • 4 weeks ago

    Read this. Washington is different from many other states. If he owned no real estate, you do not have to go through probate.

    • A Hunch
      Lv 7
      4 weeks agoReport

      I don't know the probate laws in all states (only mine).  Is it true that in most, you have to probate on any real estate?  In mine it's only if total assets are over $150K.

  • 4 weeks ago

    First, call the Social Security Administration and tell them that he died so they stop sending him money; otherwise, you (or someone) will have to return the money that they send and it will be a pain.

  • Judy
    Lv 7
    4 weeks ago

    Just the cars will make it go through probate unless they're already in your name. You'd probably be wise to talk to a lawyer who can guide you through the paperwork. Did he have any other children? If not, it's probably fairly straightforward.

    Good luck. Sorry about your dad.

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