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What Is a Surety Bond in a Estate Administration If No Will?

What is a Surety Bond in a Estate Administration where there is no Will?

Why do I need to get one? A surety bond is an insurance policy that protects the beneficiaries and creditors of the estate. Administrators are required by law to obtain a surety bond in order to be appointed.Executors may not be required to obtain a surety bond if the will waives that requirement. Source http://www.co.middlesex.nj.us/surrogate/faq.asp

How do I get a Bond released? The administrator can be released from the surety bond in two ways:

Filing the original refunding bond and release forms from all beneficiaries with the Surrogate Court and stamped copies with the Insurance Company

With the approval of the Superior Court of a formal accounting of the estate

In cases where a decedent leaves no will a personal representative will have to provide a New Jersey administrator bond, also referred to as a New Jersey personal representative bond. The bond is required by the County Surrogate Court or Will Clerk and serves as a guarantee of certain fiduciary and legal duties.

Generally an appointed administrator or personal representative will protect a decedents assets, have them professionally appraised if necessary, pay valid debts and distribute the remaining property as the law directs. The New Jersey administrator bond is requested from thesurviving spouse or domestic partner of the intestate deceased, if he or she will accept the administration, and if not or if there is no spouse or domestic partner, then from one oft the remaining heirs of the deceased. If none of these parties will accept letters of administration, then the court is free to appoint who it chooses.

The New Jersey personal representative bond is contemplated under NJ 3B:15-1. The court or surrogate appointing a fiduciary must ensure faithful performance of the administrators duties by requiring the fiduciary to furnish surety bond to the Superior Court in a sum and with proper conditions and surety, having due regard to the value of the estate to be administered and the extent of his authority. Where specific conditions as to a particular surety bond are prescribed by law, the New Jersey probate bondcannot be approved unless the prescribed conditions are included in the obligation.

The bond form must include certain elements. First, the surety bond guarantees that the administrator will make an accurate inventory of the real and personal property of the decedent which has or shall come to his possession or into the hands of any other person for him, have an appraisal made of the real and personal property, and file the inventory and appraisal in the office of the clerk of the Superior Court or of the surrogate within specific time frames.

Second, the New Jersey personal representative bond guarantees that the administrator will faithfully discharge all of the duties imposed upon him according to law, making an accurate account of his administration of the estate. The surety bond guarantees that the administrator will deliver and pay to the distributees entitled to the same, the surplus property of the decedent as may remain.

Finally, the New Jersey probate bondguarantees that the administrator will deliver his letters of administration to the proper court, when required so to do. An administrator (fiduciary) required by law or order of court to give a surety bond, may include as a part of the lawful expense of executing his duties a bond premium not exceeding one percent (1%) per annum on the amount of the bond and only to a corporate surety authorized under the laws of New Jersey to become surety on commercial bonds.

If at any time it becomes apparent that the New Jersey administrator bond given by a fiduciary at the time of his appointment was insufficient or has become insufficient or the surety appears to be insolvent or insufficient for the security of the estate, the court may order the fiduciary to give other or further security to the Superior Court, by bond in the same form using a different surety company.

The court will discharge a surety on the bond from liability for all acts and omissions occurring after the granting of the discharge if the administrator files a new New Jersey personal representative bondduly approved by the court. The surety may also be relieved by moving the court to do so at any time from three months after the entry of a final judgment of distribution made after the allowance of the final accounting.

Upon proof to the satisfaction of the court that the entire estate has been distributed according to law, and that no appeal from the judgment of distribution is pending, discharge the surety on its New Jersey probate bond for the principal from any and every liability.New Jersey surety leader - See more at: http://www.suretyone.org/blog/new-jersey-administrator-bond/#sthash.hOjK37MN.dpuf


Kenneth Vercammen was the Middlesex County Bar Municipal Court Attorney of the Year

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Kenneth Vercammen is the Managing Attorney at Kenneth Vercammen & Associates in Edison, NJ. He is a New Jersey trial attorney has devoted a substantial portion of his professional time to the preparation and trial of litigated matters. He has appeared in Courts throughout New Jersey each week for litigation and contested Probate hearings.

Mr. Vercammen has published over 125 legal articles in national and New Jersey publications on elder law, probate and litigation topics. He is a highly regarded lecturer on litigation issues for the American Bar Association, NJ ICLE, New Jersey State Bar Association and Middlesex County Bar Association. His articles have been published in noted publications included New Jersey Law Journal, ABA Law Practice Management Magazine, and New Jersey Lawyer.

He is chair of the Elder Law Committee of the American Bar Association General Practice Division. He is also Editor of the ABA Estate Planning Probate Committee Newsletter and also the Criminal Law Committee newsletter. Mr. Vercammen is a recipient of the NJSBA- YLD Service to the Bar Award. And past Winner "General Practice Attorney of the Year" from the NJ State Bar Association. He is a 22 year active member of the American Bar Association. He is also a member of the ABA Real Property, Probate & Trust Section.

He established the NJlaws website which includes many articles on Elder Law. Mr. Vercammen received his B.S., cum laude, from the University of Scranton and his J.D. from Widener/Delaware Law School, where he was the Case Note Editor of the Delaware Law Forum, a member of the Law Review and the winner of the Delaware Trial Competition.

RECENT SPEAKING ENGAGEMENTS ON WILLS, ELDER LAW, AND PROBATE

Edison Adult School -Wills, Elder Law & Probate- 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, 2003, 2002 [inc Edison TV], 2001, 2000,1999,1998,1997
Nuts & Bolts of Elder Law - NJ Institute for Continuing Legal Education/ NJ State Bar ICLE/NJSBA 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2000, 1999, 1996
Elder Law and Estate Planning- American Bar Association Miami 2007
Elder Law Practice, New Ethical Ideas to Improve Your Practice by Giving Clients What They Want and Need American Bar Association Hawaii 2006
South Plainfield Seniors- New Probate Law 2005, East Brunswick Seniors- New Probate Law 2005
Old Bridge AARP 2002; Guardian Angeles/ Edison 2002; St. Cecilia/ Woodbridge Seniors 2002;
East Brunswick/ Halls Corner 2002;
Linden AARP 2002
Woodbridge Adult School -Wills and Estate Administration -2001, 2000, 1999, 1998, 1997, 1996
Woodbridge Housing 2001; Metuchen Seniors & Metuchen TV 2001; Frigidare/ Local 401 Edison 2001; Chelsea/ East Brunswick 2001, Village Court/ Edison 2001; Old Bridge Rotary 2001; Sacred Heart/ South Amboy 2001; Livingston Manor/ New Brunswick 2001; Sunrise East Brunswick 2001; Strawberry Hill/ Woodbridge 2001;
Wills and Elder Law - Metuchen Adult School 1999,1997,1996,1995,1994,1993
Clara Barton Senior Citizens- Wills & Elder Law-Edison 2002, 1995
AARP Participating Attorney in Legal Plan for NJ AARP members 1999-2005

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