Property Law

Inside the Law: Getting Your Property Back from a Decedent

July 11, 2018 - 3:30 am

By Amy E. Feldman, Judge Technology Solutions​

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) -- How do you reclaim your property after the person who has it dies? 

A New Jersey couple hired a husband and wife team of videographers to shoot their wedding. Eight months later, they found out why they hadn't gotten it yet -- the husband and wife videographers died in a murder-suicide.  

Tragic...for the wedding couple. Remember them, our protagonists? 

It happens a lot that different people try to stake their claim to property owned by someone who has died. But what happens if you are the rightful owner of property that was in possession of someone else when he died? How do you get your stuff back? 

If there's no issue that you own the property, before you get all legal about this, ask the executor of the person's estate -- that's the person named in the will -- to settle the estate-for it. If you don't know who the executor is, go to the Register of Wills office in the county where the person died and file a proof of claim form. If the executor won't give it back, you can file a lawsuit for its return. 

And do it before it disappears or you will have to forever hold your peace.