I am a beneficiary of the estate and the executor will not give me the important papers. What can I do?

When an executor is appointed by the probate court, there are certain types of information ad papers which a beneficiary can get by requesting them.

In California, a beneficiary has the right to reasonable information about the affairs of the estate.     Such information includes what assets have been inventoried by the estate executor.   This means, the beneficiary is allowed to get a copy of the estate executor’s inventory.

How does the beneficiary get the estate papers from the executor?

  1.  Write a certified return receipt requested to the executor with the specific information you need.
  2. Talk to a lawyer about whether the type of information you are requesting is legitimately necessary.
  3. Have your lawyer file a Request for Special Notice.

California executors must give you an inventory and an accounting.  In the accounting, you are entitled to see all the assets, income and expenses of the estate.   If you have made a written request to the executor and there has been no response, you will need an attorney.

Mina N. Sirkin is a Board Certified Specialist attorney in probate and estate planning who can obtain the documents you need from the executor or the court.   Call Probate Attorney, Mina Sirkin at 818.340.4479