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Doing some detailed advance planning, want to avoid problems with siblings. I am Executor and live walking distance from parents home.
I've always assumed it would be AFTER house is sold, which could take a year or so...but one sister (the one wanting the sapphire earrings) says I should hand out the day after the funeral, all the jewelry & silver dishes & anything on the Property List.
I am thinking, she is really anxious for those earrings! So I looked on our state's laws about Wills, and it said nothing can be distributed until at least 30 days after death.
I am inclined to wait until all possible claims are made in Probate. Who knows maybe those sapphire earrings have to be sold to pay unexpected claims!

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Sam - she is relentless, isn't she! here's my suggestions & I've been executrix twice and dealt with worthless nephews situations:
- do a list of every heirs name & address. Everybody who is gonna get something.
- do a form letter in which you state that as per mom's will, you will be the named executrix (Good grief mom isn't even dead yet is she!)
- that as per state probate laws, you as executrix will have to open probate and place in the paper a public notice for any & all creditors as to the settlement of the estate. And that this will be done within the first 6 months of mom's death. If you know just how long probate is allowed in your state, I'd write that tidbit in the letter to. Like for TX it is 4 years for probate - and that my dear is a long long time.
- and for the final sentence, state that until the claim presented timeframe is past, that there will be no distribution of any of the assets of the estate. That it is your fiduciary duty to ensure the estate is settled properly.
- send the letters out certified mail and return registered receipt to all. Keep a copy of this as it will be an reimbursable expense for you as executrix. You have to do it this way as someone will say (geez guess who) they didn't get it…….

Then I'd go to the bank and get the largest safe deposit box (or 2) you can and just fill it with any & all the jewelry, flatware, etc. Pack that sucker full. Box is in your name and I'd have only you & the future probate attorney as a signature on it. I'd take one of your kids or a your non-family BFF with you to take pictures of each item too. Buy some freezer grade Ziplocs & take a Sharpie marker and label each item too & each item or group goes into a Zippie. Then when you get home you can do a list from each of the photos.

Now the Safe Deposit dept will keep a card or a list of each time anyone goes into this. So you just put everything in all at the same time and it stays there till when mom dies. Don;t go a month later to look at stuff. You want it so that IF someone bitches, you have the documentation from the bank that there was only the initial opening of the box till and then after probate has opened with a paralegal going with you.

You know that there will be fall-out on whatever you do. If you gave her the ER mañana, then next week she will find something else to fixate on. i wouldn't be surprized if other family members will be oh so happy that you are taking a firm stance on dealing with her too.

Remember the ZipLocs - very important to use but that is another story.
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Samara, someone sounds over anxious. Yes there is a wait period before assets whether things or money can be distributed. And you are right, those earrings may have to be sold to pay bills that you did not know exist.
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