Monday, February 27, 2006

A learning experience

It is hard for me to believe that "cleaning up" after Dad’s death would be easy. I thought handling the estate wouldn’t be too difficult since I had been involved in it for three years. When my uncle died, I was co-executor. There was nothing to it. Perhaps the simple excuse for that was my second cousin who is an attorney married to an attorney was the other executor! It was a breeze.
The first stumbling point was when Social Security sent me a letter which be gins "We are sorry to learn of your recent loss. Please accept our sincere sympathy." Yeah, right. They then go on to say that even though he died on the 13th of the month,. He was not entitled to the monthly benefit since they didn’t stop the payments until February he was paid too much that should be refunded to them within 30 days. Well . . .
Dealing with the insurance companies is proving to be just as interesting. My mother died in 1972. She is listed as the beneficiary on a policy I didn’t even know existed. It was taken out in 1939 (Dad was 93 if you remember). I have to get a certified death certificate for her death. This is another quite unexpected turn. So we will wait for the state to send me the death certificates (I ordered 4 - never know when something will pop up again) which will take about 3 weeks. I know I could have gone to the office in town to get it right away, but I’m not good at standing in lines.
I did his income tax and realized I really screwed it up last year. G was so busy with ours that I didn’t want to bother him. I realize now after asking the insurance companies where the 1099's were that the interest was not taxable. He way overpaid. It will be interesting to see what would happen if that return gets audited. They will pay me back.
And pay backs - the wonderful mortuary send me a refund, but it was about half of what I wanted. I am torn. Part of me wants to fight the refund even taking it to the state board that governs the funeral industry, but the other part of me really just wants to put this all to rest. I think that is the way I’m going. This is going to be a long enough road.
My attorney is getting ready to file the papers to probate the will, and the CPA in her office is preparing the final posting with the guardianship thing. Someday, someday!

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