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Fiduciary Bond Requirements

Understanding the various probate laws in place in the state of Pennsylvania is something that not only a lawyer practicing in probate administration should be aware of- indeed, anyone who might play a role in the probate process for an estate should be equipped to understand these issues.

A person who serves in such a role might or might not be required to post a bond. This is just one example of some of the complicated and concerning aspects of managing someone else’s estate. Little errors and omissions can expose this fiduciary to personal liability and these should always be handled sooner rather than later by hiring an attorney familiar with the probate process. Fiduciary bond requirements should be met immediately by the person who needs to supply these. In addition to getting a better grasp on fiduciary requirements, a person serving in this role should also discuss options for representation over the duration of closing out the estate to avoid other possible mistakes and problems.

A Pennsylvania probate fiduciary bond requirements lawyer can assist you in understanding what is required on the part of a fiduciary. A fiduciary bond requirements attorney in Pennsylvania will also be able to tell you if you have grounds for a legal case because a fiduciary did not get the appropriate bond. A fiduciary can be removed from cases in particular situations but only when you have the support of a knowledgeable Pennsylvania fiduciary bond requirements lawyer to assist you.

Bond is required in practically all grants of letters cases in Pennsylvania outlined under 20 Pa. C.S. 3171 through 3175. However, there are some exceptions to this rule. Bond is not required for corporate personal representatives to administer an estate when it is a trust or a bank company that is incorporated in Pennsylvania. Furthermore, bond is not required if a national bank has its primary and principle office in Pennsylvania or if it is a foreign corporate fiduciary that is otherwise enabled and qualified to act as the home state provides a similar exemption as outlined in Pennsylvania with relation to domestic corporate fiduciaries.

A person who is serving as an individual personal representative is not required to post bond unless ordered by the court or required by the will. A personal representative named in the will might not need bond if they are resident of Pennsylvania and their will waives bond or if the personal representative is not a resident of Pennsylvania but plans to carry out this role with a co-personal representative who is a resident of the state in which no bond is mandated and the co-personal representative intends to maintain control of the assets inside the estate.

A personal representative who is not named in a will, who is also a resident of Pennsylvania and has been nominated by all heirs at law or residuary beneficiaries or as the sole heir at law of an intestate estate or the sole beneficiary of the will, does not have to maintain bond either. This is outlined under 20 Pa. C.S. 3174. It is important to understand that to qualify as a personal representative, only a few people are exempted from this qualification, including those under 18 years of age, a corporate that is not authorized to act as a fiduciary in Pennsylvania, a person who the register determines to be unfit, any person who has been convicted of homicide or voluntary manslaughter, excluding those related to vehicle accidents, and the nominee of any heir or beneficiary of an estate if that person is outside the United States. This is outlined under 20 Pa. C.S. 3155.

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