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Undisputed will makes daughter’s appointment as special administrator improper

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Because the special administrator provision in the Indiana Code did not apply, the Indiana Court of Appeals has ruled the trial court did not abuse is discretion when it removed a special administrator of an estate without considering the state statute.

 Darla Brenton appealed her removal as special administrator of the estate of Evelyn Norfleet for the purpose of bringing a wrongful death action. Brenton asserted the trial court did not comply with I.C. Section 29-1-10-6 which details the conditions for the removal of personal representatives.

Brenton had petitioned to be appointed as special administrator for the sole purpose of collecting damages for wrongful death after her mother, Norfleet, was struck and killed by a motor vehicle. At the time the court granted her petition, Brenton did not inform the court that Norfleet had a will that named her son, Leslie Lutz, as the executor.

The COA affirmed the trial court’s order removing Brenton as special administrator in Darla M. Brenton, as Personal Representative of the Estate of Evelyn Norfleet, Deceased v. Leslie d. Lutz, 77A01-1302-ES-86.

The appeals court ruled since the parties never disputed that Norfleet’s will was validly executed, Brenton’s appointment as special administrator was not proper under I.C. 29-1-10-15. Consequently, without a valid appointment of the special administrator, there is no reason to seek removal under I.C. Section 29-1-10-6.  
 

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  1. Linda, I sure hope you are not seeking a law license, for such eighteenth century sentiments could result in your denial in some jurisdictions minting attorneys for our tolerant and inclusive profession.

  2. Mazel Tov to the newlyweds. And to those bakers, photographers, printers, clerks, judges and others who will lose careers and social standing for not saluting the New World (Dis)Order, we can all direct our Two Minutes of Hate as Big Brother asks of us. Progress! Onward!

  3. My daughter was taken from my home at the end of June/2014. I said I would sign the safety plan but my husband would not. My husband said he would leave the house so my daughter could stay with me but the case worker said no her mind is made up she is taking my daughter. My daughter went to a friends and then the friend filed a restraining order which she was told by dcs if she did not then they would take my daughter away from her. The restraining order was not in effect until we were to go to court. Eventually it was dropped but for 2 months DCS refused to allow me to have any contact and was using the restraining order as the reason but it was not in effect. This was Dcs violating my rights. Please help me I don't have the money for an attorney. Can anyone take this case Pro Bono?

  4. If justice is not found in a court room, it's time to clean house!!! Even judges are accountable to a higher Judge!!!

  5. The small claims system, based on my recent and current usage of it, is not exactly a shining example of justice prevailing. The system appears slow and clunky and people involved seem uninterested in actually serving justice within a reasonable time frame. Any improvement in accountability and performance would gain a vote from me. Speaking of voting, what do the people know about judges and justice from the bench perspective. I think they have a tendency to "vote" for judges based on party affiliation or name coolness factor (like Stoner, for example!). I don't know what to do in my current situation other than grin and bear it, but my case is an example of things working neither smoothly, effectively nor expeditiously. After this experience I'd pay more to have the higher courts hear the case -- if I had the money. Oh the conundrum.

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