My mom’s executor hasn’t given out our inheritances. What now?


Q. My mother passed and left my little brother as executor of her will. It has been nearly a year and he has not executed her wishes as far as giving his siblings the inheritance she left for us. What are our options?
— Heir

A. It can get ugly when it comes to money and family members.

As executor, your brother has certain duties. If he’s not following them, you have an option.

Under New Jersey law, an executor is not required to account to the beneficiaries or distribute estate assets until one year after the executor’s appointment, said Shirley Whitenack, an estate planning attorney with Schenck, Price, Smith & King in Florham Park.

“If the executor fails to account after that one year period, the beneficiaries have the right to petition the court to compel an accounting and a schedule of distribution,” she said.

So when the year mark comes, it’s time to contact the county.

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This story was originally published on Oct. 23, 2020. presents certain general financial planning principles and advice, but should never be viewed as a substitute for obtaining advice from a personal professional advisor who understands your unique individual circumstances.