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Deed Question - Need Help ASAP

Discussion in 'Other Ownership, Use & Privacy Issues' started by Jaime C, Jul 13, 2020.

  1. Jaime C

    Jaime C Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Jurisdiction:
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    Have a question hoping to get some help with. My wife's father passed away about 5 years ago while living in MN where he only lived for about 2-3 years. He had no will. He owned some land in Delaware for about the last 30 years where he lived almost all 55+ years of his life. We have the deed. But it is still in his name and she has been paying the taxes for the past 10 years. What does she need to do in order to get it transferred into her name? We have the death certificate and my wife's birth certificate which shows he was her father. She is the only child he had and he was not married. Any help would be hugely appreciated.
     
  2. adjusterjack

    adjusterjack Super Moderator

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    Then he was a resident of Minnesota when he died and his estate should have been probated there even if it qualified for small estate treatment. If not, she might have to if Delaware requires it in order to probate the land in Delaware.

    However, I suggest that her first step would be filing for probate in Delaware and getting appointed representative of the estate. As representative of the estate she can complete the probate process and execute a deed from the estate to herself and become owner of the land. That she was paying taxes on it for 10 years provides no advantage. If she is successful at probating the land in Delaware she won't have to do anything in Minnesota.

    She can get an idea of what the process entails at the following website of one of the courts in Delaware, or she can go to the website of the probate court in the county where the land is located.

    Probate Process | New Castle County, DE - Official Website

    She can also study up on the Delaware probate code:

    2019 Delaware Code :: Title 12 - Decedents' Estates and Fiduciary Relations

    She also has the option of hiring a probate attorney where the land is located.
     
  3. zddoodah

    zddoodah Well-Known Member

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    She will need to probate her father's estate and demonstrate to the court that she is entitled to have the property transferred to her. She should start by consulting with a probate lawyer in Delaware, but it's possible that probate proceedings will need to be filed both in DE (where the property is located) and in MN (where her father lived). Attempting to do this without an attorney would be quite foolish -- especially since she allowed this to sit for five years (why is that, by the way?).
     

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