Part II - Executor May Be Awarded Attorney Fees and Costs if Participating "As A Party to Assist the Court"

In continuation of our blog on the Estate of Hans Barsch (193 Cal. App. 4th 885 – Cal: Court of Appeal, 1st Appellate Dist., 1st Div, 2011), after Hans Bartsch's death, Arndt Peltner (petitioner and respondent) was appointed as the personal representative of the estate. However, in 2009, Norman Bartsch Herterich (objector and appellant) filed a petition claiming to be an omitted child under Probate Code section 21622. Norman's petition prays for an order directing the personal representative to distribute the entire estate to him.

Arndt objected to Norman's petition. Arndt also filed a petition for an order approving an interim payment of his attorney fees and expenses, relying in part on Probate Code 11704, subdivision (b) that states that "the personal representative may file papers and otherwise participate in the proceeding as a party to assist the court." Norman objected to Arndt's petition for attorney fees and expenses, asserting that Arndt should not receive payment from the estate for the services performed by his attorney because respondent is also a beneficiary and therefor is not an impartial personal representative.

The probate court granted Arndt's petition for an interim payment of attorney fees and expenses. Norman appealed the court's ruling.

Stay tuned for more on this topic on our subsequent blog.

*This blog entry was not written by an Attorney and should not be construed as professional legal advice.

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