What to do if my brother paid funeral expenses out of insurance money that he was solebeneficiaryof but nowinsists thatmy sister and I owe him 1/3 of the expenses?

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What to do if my brother paid funeral expenses out of insurance money that he was solebeneficiaryof but nowinsists thatmy sister and I owe him 1/3 of the expenses?

My mother had Will and my sister is the administrator. Everything was to be split 3 ways. Her house was turned over with a beneficiary deed to the 3 of us. The insurance my mom paid for was more than enough to pay for funeral costs. My brother was beneficiary of the policy. Since, my mom wanted everything shared as stated in the Will, do we owe my brother money for the funeral?

Asked on February 26, 2012 under Estate Planning, Arizona

Answers:

Steven Fromm / Steven J Fromm & Associates, P.C.

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

The insurance proceeds were not part of the probate estate.  The funeral expenses are a debt of the estate that is to be paid by the probate estate.  So your brother technically needs to be reimbursed for his payment of the funeral expenses from HIS assets which include the life insurance proceeds.  So he can claim a reimbursement from the estate for the entire amount, not just 2/3rds.

However if you can prove that he received the proceeds under some sort of constructive trust for the benefit of all three of you this would trump the prior discussion.  But this may be hard for you to prove.  Talk with an estates attorney to explore this option or other options.

 

 


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