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If You’re a Creditor to a Decedent How Do You File a Claim?

If You’re a Creditor to a Decedent How Do You File a Claim? 

Orlando and Winter Haven attorney L. Reed Bloodworth discusses the process of filing a claim as a creditor to a decedent. Reed is managing partner of Bloodworth Law, and handles probate and estate litigation for creditors, businesses, families, and individuals in Florida. 

Notice of Creditors

When someone passes away with debt owed to creditors, a Notice of Creditors is published in newspapers to inform people, and business entities with whom the decedent held debt. 

Creditor Claim

Creditors who are owed money by the decedent are then required to submit a timely statement of claim – a creditor claim — in the probate estate in order to pursue satisfaction of debts. 

The creditor claim must be filed on or before the later of three months after the time of the first publication of the Notice to Creditors. Or, 30 days from the date of service on the creditor as to any reasonably ascertainable creditor. 

Statement of Claim

The creditor files a statement of claim with the clerk of the court.

Legitimate debt claims should be paid or negotiated, but not before the creditor period has run out. Additionally, a creditor can probate an estate within two years of death to pursue payment.

Claim Objections

If the personal representative objects to the claim, he or she may file an objection by sending notice of the objection to the creditor. 

The objection must be filed on or before the expiration of four months from the first publication of notice to creditors or within 30 days from the timely filing or amendment of a claim, whichever occurs later according to Florida Statutes. 

The creditor has 30 days to file a separate independent lawsuit to pursue the claim.

Paid or Negotiated 

If an objection to the claim is not filed by the personal representative, the claim must be paid or negotiated with a debtor.

Satisfaction of Claim

Once a claim is satisfied, a satisfaction of claim is filed by the creditor.

The Bloodworth Law team works with creditors who are owed money by decedents, and with personal representatives estates facing creditor claims responsibilities.

If you have questions about creditor claims, talk with Reed about how Bloodworth Law can help you, your family, or your business. 

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