Legislation Would Ensure Fair and Effective Communication in Estate Transfers

MACo submitted written testimony in support of Senate Bill 466, “Estates and Trusts – Administration of Estates – Waiver of Fees”, to the House Health and Government Operations Committee on March 28, 2018.

This bill would allow for the waiver of probate and administration fees in certain circumstances where the heir of an estate is unable to afford the settlement of an estate. Additionally, if the heir continues to live on the property it is possible that they may not be receiving appropriate bills for property taxes or utility usage that would be sent in the owner of the property’s name.

MACo supports this bill in the effort to effectively settle estates to avoid proceeding to tax sale while also ensuring accurate land reports and reduce errant billing.

The bill and its cross-filed counterpart, House Bill 556, have already passed their respective houses unanimously.

From MACo Testimony:

Counties support this bill as a “good government,” wise approach to prevent properties from unnecessarily going to tax sale. Tax sale serves as an effective means of collection and one of last resort. However, it benefits everyone to make sure that the record owner of the property is correct, so that counties can provide notice of moneys owed and assistance to their residents effectively.

Because it helps put counties in contact with the correct resident of a property, and facilitates notice of moneys owed and assistance available to those who need it, MACo urges a FAVORABLE report on SB 466.”

For more on this and other legislation, follow MACo’s advocacy efforts during the 2018 legislative session here.