Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 64.2. Wills, Trusts, and Fiduciaries
Chapter 5. Personal Representatives and Administration of Estates
11/22/2019

§ 64.2-556. Order to creditors to show cause against distribution of estate to legatees or distributees; liability of legatees or distributees to refund.

A. When a report of the accounts of any personal representative and of the debts and demands against the decedent's estate has been filed in the office of a clerk of a court, whether under §§ 64.2-550 and 64.2-551 or in a civil action, the court, after six months from the qualification of the personal representative, may, on motion of the personal representative, or a successor or substitute personal representative, or on motion of a legatee or distributee of the decedent, enter an order for the creditors and all other persons interested in the estate of the decedent to show cause on the day named in the order against the payment and delivery of the estate of the decedent to his legatees or distributees. A copy of the order shall be published once a week for two successive weeks, in one or more newspapers, as the court directs; the costs of such publication shall be paid by the petitioner or applicant. On or after the day named in the order, the court may order the payment and delivery to the legatees or distributees of the whole or a part of the money and other estate not before distributed, with or without a refunding bond, as it prescribes. However, every legatee or distributee to whom any such payment or delivery is made, and his representatives, may, in a suit brought against him within five years after such payment or delivery is made, be adjudged to refund a due proportion of any claims enforceable against the decedent or his estate that have been finally allowed by the commissioner of accounts or the court, or that were not presented to the commissioner of accounts, and the costs of the recovery of such claim. In the event any claim becomes known to the fiduciary after the notice for debts and demands but prior to the entry of an order of distribution, the claimant, if the claim is disputed, shall be given notice in the form provided in § 64.2-550 and the order of distribution shall not be entered until after expiration of 10 days from the giving of such notice. If the claimant, within such 10-day period, indicates his desire to pursue the claim, the commissioner of accounts shall schedule a date for hearing the claim and for reporting thereon if action thereon is contemplated under § 64.2-550.

B. Any personal representative who has in good faith complied with the provisions of this section and has, in compliance with or, as subsequently approved by, the order of the court, paid and delivered the money or other estate in his possession to any party that the court has adjudged entitled thereto shall not be liable for any demands of creditors and all other persons.

C. Any personal representative who has in good faith complied with the provisions of this section and has, in compliance with, or as subsequently approved by, the order of the court, paid and delivered the money or other estate in his possession to any party that the court has adjudged entitled thereto, even if such distribution shall be prior to the expiration of the period of one year provided in § 64.2-302, Article 1.1 (§ 64.2-308.1 et seq.) of Chapter 3, or § 64.2-313, 64.2-448, or 64.2-457, shall not be liable for any demands of spouses, persons seeking to impeach the will or establish another will, or purchasers of real estate from the personal representative, provided that the personal representative has contacted any surviving spouse known to it having rights of renunciation and ascertained that the surviving spouse had no plan to renounce the will, such intent to be stated in writing in the case of renunciation under § 64.2-302 or Article 1.1 (§ 64.2-308.1 et seq.) of Chapter 3, as applicable, and that the personal representative has not been notified in writing of any person's intent to impeach the will or establish a later will in the case of persons claiming under § 64.2-448 or 64.2-457 or under a later will.

D. In the case of such distribution prior to the expiration of such one-year period, the personal representative shall take refunding bonds, without surety, to the next of kin or legatees to whom distribution is made, to protect against the contingencies specified in this section.

Code 1950, § 64-169; 1966, c. 335; 1968, c. 656, § 64.1-179; 1980, c. 439; 1982, c. 588; 1989, c. 492; 1991, c. 527; 1996, c. 352; 2005, c. 681; 2012, c. 614; 2016, cc. 187, 269.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of this section may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.