Missouri Revised Statutes

Chapter 473
Probate Code--Administration of Decedents' Estates

August 28, 2013




Venue.

473.010. 1. The will of any decedent shall be probated and letters testamentary or of administration shall be granted:

(1) In the county in which the domicile of the deceased is situated;

(2) If he had no domicile in this state then in any county wherein he left any property; except that when the major part of a nonresident decedent's estate in this state consists of real estate, the will shall be probated and letters testamentary or of administration shall be granted in the county in which the real estate or the major part thereof is located;

(3) If the decedent had no domicile in this state and left no property therein, in any county in which the granting thereof is required in order to protect or secure any legal right.

2. If proceedings are commenced in more than one county, they shall be stayed except in the county where first commenced until final determination of venue in the county where first commenced. The proceedings are deemed commenced by the filing of an application for letters; and the proceedings first legally commenced extends to all of the property of the estate in this state.

3. All orders, settlements, trials and other proceedings pertaining to any estate shall be had or made in the county in which the letters were granted.

(RSMo 1939 4, 5, 531, L. 1955 p. 385 30, A.L. 1959 S.B. 141)

Prior revisions: 1929 4, 5, 530; 1919 4, 5, 518; 1909 12, 13, 548



Character of proceeding--jurisdiction of court.

473.013. The administration of the estate of a decedent from the filing of the application for letters testamentary or of administration until the decree of final distribution and the discharge of the last personal representative is deemed one proceeding for purposes of jurisdiction. Such entire proceeding is a proceeding in rem. No notice is jurisdictional except the notice by publication provided in section 473.033, unless the provision requiring the notice expressly provides that the notice is jurisdictional. Whether the administration is supervised or independent, from the time of first publication of the notice provided in section 473.033, the probate division of the circuit court has in rem jurisdiction of all real and personal property of the decedent located within this state.

(L. 1955 p. 385 31, A.L. 1957 p. 829, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Application for letters--content.

473.017. 1. An application for letters testamentary or of administration shall state all of the following:

(1) The name, age, sex, domicile, last residence address and the fact and date of death of the decedent;

(2) The names, relationship to decedent, and residence addresses of the surviving spouse, heirs, devisees and legatees of the decedent, if any, and their birth dates, if minors; the names and addresses of the conservators of any minor or disabled heirs, legatees or spouse of the decedent, if known; and if applicant has reason to believe that there are any heirs or devisees who are mentally incapacitated or that there are other heirs or devisees but their names and addresses are unknown to him, he shall so state;

(3) The probable value of the real and personal property;

(4) If decedent had no domicile in this state, the location and the probable value of any land owned by him in this state at the time of his death, if any, and the probable value of the personal property within the state, so far as is known, which may be subject to administration in this state;

(5) If the decedent died testate and the will has not been delivered to the court, the contents of the will, either by attaching a copy of it to the petition, or, if the will is lost, destroyed or suppressed, by including a statement of the provisions of the will so far as known;

(6) The names and residence addresses of the persons, if any, named as executors;

(7) Where letters of administration on the estate of an intestate are sought, the name and residence address of the person for whom letters are prayed, and his relationship to the decedent or other facts, if any, which entitle such person to appointment;

(8) The name and address of the attorney for the applicant;

(9) That if letters are issued, the applicant will make a perfect inventory of the estate, pay the debts and legacies, if any, as far as the assets extend and the law directs, and account for and distribute or pay all assets which come into the possession of the personal representative, and perform all things required by law touching the administration of the estate;

(10) Whether the application is for supervised or independent administration.

2. After letters have been granted on an estate, the personal representative or other interested person, if the information contained in the application required by subsection 1 is not complete or is no longer correct, shall communicate in writing promptly to the clerk such facts known to him as are necessary to complete or correct the same.

(L. 1955 p. 385 32, A.L. 1957 p. 829, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1981 S.B. 117, A.L. 1983 S.B. 44 & 45)



If no application filed, others may request administration or probate--petition, form, contents--hearing, notice, orders.

473.020. 1. If no application for letters testamentary or of administration is filed by a person entitled to such letters pursuant to section 473.110 within twenty days after the death of a decedent, then any interested person may petition the probate division of the circuit court which would be the proper venue for the administration of the estate of such decedent for the issuance of letters testamentary or of administration. For purposes of this section, in addition to persons provided for in subdivision (15) of section 472.010, any person who has attached a claim supported by an affidavit setting forth the basis upon which such person has a claim against the decedent shall be an interested person.

2. The petition must be filed within one year after the date of death of the decedent and shall include the following:

(1) The decedent's name, the address of the decedent's last residence and the date of death of the decedent;

(2) If a written will of the decedent has been presented for probate, the names and addresses of the personal representatives designated in such will; and

(3) The names, addresses and relationships to the decedent of the decedent's heirs as is known to, or can be reasonably ascertained by, the petitioner.

3. Within fifteen days from the date of filing, the petition shall be set for hearing to determine who should be directed to apply for letters testamentary or of administration, and not to determine the validity of any claim. Notice of the hearing shall be served upon all interested persons in the manner and within such time as directed by the court. Upon hearing of the petition, the court shall enter such order or orders as it deems appropriate, including any of the following:

(1) An order directing the person found by the court to be entitled to the issuance of letters testamentary or of administration to apply for and qualify for such letters within such time as is allowed by the court, and in default of such timely application and qualification, upon application, the court shall issue letters of administration to some other person found suitable by the court;

(2) An order refusing letters on the estate; or

(3) An order dismissing the petition.

(RSMo 1939 8, A.L. 1955 p. 385 34, A.L. 1957 p. 829, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1996 S.B. 494)

Prior revisions: 1929 8; 1919 8; 1909 10

Effective 5-23-96



Court or clerk to grant letters.

473.023. The probate division of the circuit court, or the clerk thereof, subject to modification or revocation by the court, shall grant letters testamentary and of administration.

(RSMo 1939 1, A.L. 1955 p. 385 33, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634)

Prior revisions: 1929 1; 1919 1; 1909 9

Effective 1-2-79



Request for special notice of hearings.

473.030. At any time after the issuance of letters, any person interested in the estate, in person or by attorney, may serve upon the executor or administrator, or upon his attorney, and file with the clerk of the court where the proceedings are pending, with a written acknowledgment of or proof of service, a written request, stating that he desires written notice by ordinary mail of the time and place of all hearings on the settlement of accounts, on final distribution, and on any other matters for which any notice is required by law, by rule of court or by an order in the particular case. The applicant for notice shall include in his written request his post-office address or that of his attorney. Unless the court otherwise directs, upon filing the request the clerk shall give the applicant notice of all hearings for which any notice is required as aforesaid, or of such of those hearings as he designates in his request.

(L. 1955 p. 385 36)



Notice of letters--duty of clerk--publication--form.

473.033. The clerk, as soon as letters testamentary or of administration are issued, shall cause to be published in some newspaper a notice of the appointment of the personal representative, in which shall be included a notice to creditors of the decedent to file their claims in the court or be forever barred. The notice shall be published once a week for four consecutive weeks. The clerk shall send a copy of the notice by ordinary mail to each heir and devisee whose name and address are shown on the application for letters or other records of the court, but any heir or devisee may waive notice to such person by filing a waiver in writing. The personal representative may, but is not required to, send a copy of the notice by ordinary mail or personal service to any creditor of the decedent whose claim has not been paid, allowed or disallowed as provided in section 473.403. Proof of publication of notice under this section and proof of mailing of notice shall be filed not later than ten days after completion of the publication. The notice shall be in substantially the following form:

To all persons interested in the estate of .........................., decedent:

On the ................................. day of ...................., 20.., (the last will of the decedent having been admitted to probate) .............................. was appointed the personal representative of the estate of ........................., decedent, by the probate division of the circuit court of ............................... County, Missouri. The business address of the personal representative is ..................................., and the personal representative's attorney is ...................... of ............................ .

All creditors of the decedent are notified to file claims in court within six months from the date of first publication of this notice or if a copy of this notice was mailed to, or served upon, such creditor by the personal representative, then within two months from the date it was mailed or served, whichever is later, or be forever barred to the fullest extent permissible by law. Such six-month period and such two-month period do not extend the limitation period that would bar claims one year after the decedent's death, as provided in section 473.444, RSMo, or any other applicable limitation periods. Nothing in section 473.033, RSMo, shall be construed to bar any action against a decedent's liability insurance carrier through a defendant ad litem pursuant to section 537.021, RSMo.

Receipt of this notice by mail should not be construed by the recipient to indicate that the recipient necessarily has a beneficial interest in the estate. The nature and extent of any person's interest, if any, can be determined from the files and records of this estate in the probate division of the circuit court of ............. County, Missouri.

Date of the decedent's death was ...................................., 20.....

Date of first publication is .............................................., 20......

............................. ...................

Clerk of the Probate Division

of the Circuit Court

.................. County, Missouri

(L. 1955 p. 385 37, A.L. 1969 S.B. 86, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1983 H.B. 369, A.L. 1989 H.B. 145, A.L. 1993 S.B. 88, A.L. 1996 S.B. 494)

Effective 5-23-96



Successor need not publish notice, when.

473.037. If notice is given of the first letters granted on an estate in accordance with section 473.033, no notice of letters thereafter granted to a successor executor or administrator is required.

(RSMo 1939 79, A.L. 1955 p. 385 38)

Prior revisions: 1929 79; 1919 78; 1909 86



Notice where there are no known heirs.

473.040. When an intestate has left no known heirs, the clerk shall also publish a notice, once a week for six consecutive weeks in at least two newspapers, published in the places designated by the court, containing the name of the intestate, a description of his person, the time and place of his death, the place of his nativity, if known, and the appraised amount of his estate.

(RSMo 1939 80, A.L. 1955 p. 385 39)

Prior revisions: 1929 80; 1919 79; 1909 87



Will of decedent, where delivered--wills found in safe deposit boxes, how delivered--refusal to deliver, how handled.

473.043. 1. After the death of the testator, the person having custody of his will shall deliver it to the probate division of the circuit court which has jurisdiction of the estate or to the probate division of the circuit court of the county where the will is found and if the latter, that court shall keep a copy and deliver the original will, by certified mail, to the probate division of the circuit court which has jurisdiction of the estate.

2. Wills of decedents found in safe deposit boxes are in the custody of the depository for the purposes of this section and said depository may make a copy of the will before delivering it to the proper court.

3. If the probate division of the circuit court is satisfactorily informed that any person has in his possession the will of any testator, and refuses to produce the same, the court may summon the person, and compel him, by attachment and commitment, to produce the same.

(RSMo 1939 569, A.L. 1955 p. 385 40, A.L. 1971 S.B. 85, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634)

Prior revisions: 1929 568; 1919 556; 1909 584

Effective 1-2-79



Certificate of probate or rejection.

473.047. When any will is exhibited to be proven the judge or clerk may immediately receive the proof and grant a certificate of probate, or, if the will is rejected, grant a certificate of rejection.

(RSMo 1939 532, A.L. 1955 p. 385 41)

Prior revisions: 1929 531; 1919 519; 1909 549



Wills, presentment for probate, time limited--presented, defined.

473.050. 1. A will, to be effective as a will, must be presented for and admitted to probate.

2. When used in chapter 472, chapter 474, chapter 475, and this chapter, the term "presented" means:

(1) Either the delivery of a will of a decedent, if such will has not previously been delivered, to the probate division of the circuit court which would be the proper venue for the administration of the estate of such decedent, or the delivery of a verified statement to such court, if the will of such decedent is lost, destroyed, suppressed or otherwise not available, setting forth the reason such will is not available and setting forth the provisions of such will so far as known; and

(2) One of the following:

(a) An affidavit pursuant to section 473.097, which requests such will be admitted to probate; or

(b) A petition which seeks to have such will admitted to probate; or

(c) An authenticated copy of the order admitting such will to probate in any state, territory or district of the United States, other than this state.

3. No proof shall be taken of any will nor a certificate of probate thereof issued unless such will has been presented within the applicable time set forth as follows:

(1) In cases where notice has previously been given in accordance with section 473.033 of the granting of letters on the estate of such testator, within six months after the date of the first publication of the notice of granting of letters, or within thirty days after the commencement of an action under section 473.083 to establish or contest the validity of a will of the testator named in such will, whichever later occurs;

(2) In cases where notice has not previously been given in accordance with section 473.033 of the granting of letters on the estate of testator, within one year after the date of death of the testator;

(3) In cases involving a will admitted to probate in any state, territory or district of the United States, other than this state, which was the decedent's domicile, at any time during the course of administration of the decedent's domiciliary estate in such other state, territory or district of the United States.

4. A will presented for probate within the time limitations provided in subsection 3 of this section may be exhibited to be proven, and proof received and administration granted on such will at any time after such presentation.

5. A will not presented for probate within the time limitations provided in subsection 3 of this section is forever barred from admission to probate in this state.

6. Except as provided in section 537.021, no letters of administration shall be issued unless application is made to the court for such letters within one year from the date of death of the decedent.

(RSMo 1939 532, A.L. 1955 p. 385 42, A.L. 1969 S.B. 85, A.L. 1973 H.B. 216, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634, A.L. 1996 S.B. 494)

Prior revisions: 1929 531; 1919 519; 1909 549

Effective 5-23-96

(2005) Tolling provisions of federal Servicemembers' Civil Relief Act toll statute of limitations for filing petition for presentment and application for letters testamentary for covered individuals. State ex rel. Estate of Perry ex rel. Perry, 168 S.W.3d 577 (Mo.App.W.D.).



Testimony of subscribing witnesses, other evidence.

473.053. 1. At least two of the subscribing witnesses to a written will shall be examined if they are alive and competent to testify and otherwise available. Before any will is probated each of at least two witnesses thereto shall testify to facts showing that the will was executed in accordance with section 474.320. This section does not alter the rules of evidence as to the establishment of a will by probate in solemn form or affect the probate of a self-proved will.

2. If either or both of the subscribing witnesses to the will are dead, physically or mentally incapable of testifying, or their whereabouts unknown, then due execution of the will by testator and its attestation by subscribing witnesses shall be proved by the available subscribing witness, if any, and proof of the handwriting of any dead or mentally incapacitated subscribing witness or subscribing witness whose whereabouts is unknown, or by such other competent evidence as is available.

(L. 1955 p. 385 43, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1981 S.B. 117, A.L. 1983 S.B. 44 & 45)



Commission for testimony of nonattendant witness.

473.057. If a witness to any will for good cause shown is prevented from attending at the time when any will is produced for probate, the clerk or court may issue a commission annexed to the will or a photostatic copy thereof, and directed, if the witness resides out of the United States to any court having a seal, of any state, kingdom, republic or empire, or mayor or other chief officer of any city or town having a seal, or to any minister or consul of the United States to any country in which the witness resides; if without this state and within the United States, to any court having a seal, or to any notary public in the state, territory or district in which the witness resides; and if within this state, to any court having a seal, or judge thereof, notary public, mayor, or other chief officer of any city or town in the county where the witness resides, empowering him to take and certify the attestation of the witness. If any witness is a member of the Armed Forces of the United States on active duty and out of this state, the commission may be issued to any commissioned officer, other than a warrant officer, of any of the Armed Forces of the United States, on active duty, and shall authorize him to take and certify the attestation of the witness.

(RSMo 1939 533, A.L. 1955 p. 385 44, A.L. 1973 S.B. 132, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634)

Prior revisions: 1929 532; 1919 520; 1909 550

Effective 1-2-79



Testimony before officer, effect.

473.060. If the witness appears before such officer and makes oath or affirmation that the testator signed the writing annexed to the commission, as his last will, or that the testator signed the writing, of which the photostatic copy annexed to such commission is a copy as his last will, or that some other person signed it by his direction, and in his presence, that the witness subscribed his name thereto in the presence of testator, the testimony so taken shall have the same force as if taken before the court or clerk.

(RSMo 1939 534, A.L. 1955 p. 385 45, A.L. 1961 p. 653)

Prior revisions: 1929 533; 1919 521; 1909 551



Testimony to be recorded--record as evidence.

473.063. 1. All the testimony adduced in support of any will shall be reduced to writing, signed by the witnesses and certified by the clerk.

2. The record of the testimony of any witness so certified is admissible in evidence in any action involving the validity of a will upon a showing that the subscribing witness is dead, mentally incapacitated or cannot be found.

(RSMo 1939 537, 541, A.L. 1955 p. 385 46, A.L. 1983 S.B. 44 & 45)

Prior revisions: 1929 536, 540; 1919 524, 528; 1909 554, 558



Probate of will, when--procedure for contest.

473.065. 1. A will which appears to have the required signatures and a certificate as provided in section 474.337, showing that the requirements of execution under section 474.320 have been met, shall be probated without further proof.

2. Procedure for the contest of a will probated under subsection 1 shall be as provided in section 473.083.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Proof of nuncupative wills.

473.067. Proof of nuncupative wills is subject to the requirements of section 474.340.

(L. 1955 p. 385 47)



Heirs, time limits to establish interest in estate--posthumous heirs in gestation, mother has right to file action--time limitations.

473.070. 1. Any action to establish an interest in an estate by descent shall be filed prior to the expiration of the applicable objection period for a final settlement pursuant to section 473.590 or for a statement of account pursuant to subsection 4 of section 473.840.

2. The mother of an alleged heir who is not yet born and is in gestation shall have the right to file an action in accordance with subsection 1 of this section on behalf of the alleged heir.

(L. 1955 p. 385 48, A.L. 1971 S.B. 85, A.L. 1985 S.B. 35, et al., A.L. 1989 H.B. 145, A.L. 1996 S.B. 494)

Effective 5-23-96

(2000) Statute requiring application for letters of administration within one year of decedent's death applies to paternity proceedings brought under Uniform Parentage Act. Johnson v. Akers, 9 S.W.3d 608 (Mo.banc).



Proof required for probate and grant of administration.

473.073. 1. On the presentation and proof of a will to the clerk or court, if the clerk or court finds that the testator is dead and that the will was executed in all respects according to law, and does not find that the will was revoked, the will shall be admitted to probate as the last will of the testator.

2. On an application for letters, the clerk or court shall determine whether the deceased died testate or intestate and grant letters accordingly or on proper grounds, may deny the application.

(L. 1955 p. 385 49, A.L. 1961 p. 653)



Proceedings reopened, when.

473.077. If the court determines the facts as provided in section 473.073, its order shall be final, subject to the following exceptions:

(1) It may be reopened at any time, within six months from the date of the first publication of notice of letters, for the purpose of admitting a will to probate not theretofore presented to the court except that, if a previous will has been probated or rejected, it may not be reopened after the time for bringing a proceeding under section 473.083;

(2) It may be vacated or modified for good cause as provided in section 472.150;

(3) The finding that the alleged decedent is dead is not final or conclusive.

(L. 1955 p. 385 50, A.L. 1971 S.B. 85)



Certificate of probate, contents--evidence.

473.080. The certificate of probate or rejection granted under section 473.047 shall be attached to each written will which is in the custody of the court. Such certificate shall set forth the names of the witnesses examined together with their testimony. If for any reason a written will is not in the custody of the court, the court shall find the contents thereof, and the order admitting the will to probate shall state the contents and a certificate shall be annexed as above provided. Every will certified as herein provided, or the record thereof, or a duly certified transcript of the record, may be read in evidence in the courts in this state without further proof.

(L. 1955 p. 385 51)



Probate of portion of will.

473.081. When part of a will is not admissible to probate because of fraud, duress, undue influence, mistake, ignorance of the testator of its content, partial revocation, or other cause, the other parts of the will may be admitted to probate under sections 473.073 and 473.083.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Will binding, when--contest of will, when, procedure.

473.083. 1. Unless any person interested in the probate of a will appears within six months after the date of the probate or rejection thereof by the probate division of the circuit court, or within six months after the first publication of notice of granting of letters on the estate of the decedent, whichever is later, and, by petition filed with the clerk of the circuit court of the county, contests the validity of a probated will, or prays to have a will probated which has been rejected by the probate division of the circuit court, then probate or rejection of the will is binding. An heir, devisee, trustee or trust beneficiary under another purported will of the same decedent, and a person who has acquired, before or after the death of the testator, all or part of the interest of such heir or devisee by purchase, gift, devise, intestate succession, mortgage or lien, is interested in the probate of a will for purposes of this section.

2. Whenever it is shown or appears to and is found by the judge of the probate division that any person interested in the probate of a will is a minor or mentally incapacitated person, and that the filing of a contest may be to the interest of the minor or person, the court shall appoint a guardian ad litem for the minor or person, who shall file or join in the contest within the time fixed by subsection 1 of this section.

3. It is not necessary to join as parties in a will contest persons whose interests will not be affected adversely by the result thereof. Subject to the provisions of section 472.300, persons not joined as parties in a will contest are not bound by the result thereof and have no rights in or to any consideration given for dismissal pursuant to subsection 8 of this section.

4. Upon filing of the petition the clerk of the circuit court shall immediately notify the probate division of the circuit court and transmit to it a copy of the petition within ten days after its filing.

5. Any contest of the validity of a probated will or any prayer to have probated a will which has been rejected by the judge of the probate division shall be heard before a circuit judge other than the judge of the probate division, provided, however, that with the consent of the judge of the probate division, such actions may be filed in or transferred to the probate division for hearing. Service of summons, petition, and subsequent pleadings thereto together with all subsequent proceedings in such will contest proceedings shall be governed by the Missouri Rules of Civil Procedure and the provisions of The Civil Code of Missouri which are in effect.

6. In any such action the petitioner shall proceed diligently to secure and complete service of process as provided by law on all parties defendant. If service of process is not secured and completed upon all parties defendant within ninety days after the petition is filed, the petition, on motion of any defendant duly served upon the petitioner or his attorney of record, in the absence of a showing by the petitioner of good cause for failure to secure and complete service, shall be dismissed at the cost of the petitioner.

7. If a timely petition is filed, it and the answer or answers thereto shall frame the issues of intestacy or testacy or which writing or writings constitute the decedent's will. The issues shall be tried by a jury, or if no party requires a jury, by the court, and the judgment thereon shall determine the issues. The verdict of jury or the finding and judgment of the court is final, saving to the court the right of granting a new trial and to the parties the right of appeal as in other cases.

8. Any such action may be voluntarily dismissed, after the period of contest has expired, by consent of all parties not in default, at the cost of the party or parties designated, at any time prior to final judgment. Dismissal under this subsection shall not be considered a compromise of the action requiring court approval pursuant to sections 473.084 and 473.085, even though the parties have contractually agreed to an exchange of consideration for such dismissal or consent, and even though others similarly situated do not participate in such consideration.

9. If the action is dismissed under the provisions of subsection 6 or 8 of this section, the judge of the probate division shall proceed with the administration of the estate in accord with his previous order admitting the will to probate or rejecting a will as if the petition had never been filed with the clerk of the circuit court.

(RSMo 1939 538, 539, 540, A.L. 1955 p. 385 52, A.L. 1959 S.B. 141, A.L. 1969 p. 550, A.L. 1973 S.B. 114, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1983 S.B. 44 & 45, A.L. 1989 H.B. 145)

Prior revisions: 1929 537, 538, 539; 1919 525, 526, 527; 1909 555, 556, 557

Effective 7-13-89



Compromise of controversy as to probate, when binding.

473.084. A compromise of any controversy as to admission to probate of any instrument offered for probate as the will of a decedent, the construction, validity, or effect of any probated will, the rights or interest in the estate of the decedent of any successor, or the administration of the estate, if approved in a proceeding in the court for that purpose, is binding on all the parties thereto, including those unborn, unascertained, or who could not be located. An approved compromise is binding even though it may affect a trust or an inalienable interest. A compromise does not impair the rights of creditors or of taxing authorities who are not parties to it.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Court approval of compromise, procedure for securing.

473.085. The procedure for securing court approval of a compromise is as follows:

(1) The terms of the compromise shall be set forth in an agreement in writing which shall be executed by all competent persons and parents acting for any minor child having beneficial interests or having claims which will or may be affected by the compromise. Execution is not required by any person whose identity cannot be ascertained or whose whereabouts are unknown and cannot reasonably be ascertained;

(2) Any interested person, including a personal representative or trustee, may then submit the agreement to the court for its approval and for execution by the personal representative, the trustee of every affected testamentary trust, and other fiduciaries and representatives;

(3) After notice to all interested persons or their representatives, including the personal representative of the estate and all affected trustees of trusts, the court in which the controversy is pending, if it finds that the contest or controversy is in good faith and that the effect of the agreement upon the interests of persons represented by fiduciaries or other representatives is just and reasonable, shall make an order approving the agreement and directing all fiduciaries over which it has jurisdiction to execute the agreement. Minor children represented only by their parents may be bound only if their parents join with other competent persons in execution of the compromise. Upon the making of the order and the execution of the agreement, all further disposition of the estate is in accordance with the terms of the agreement.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1982 S.B. 700 Revision)



Will not effective until probated.

473.087. No will is effectual for the purpose of proving title to, or the right to the possession of, any real or personal property, disposed of by the will, until it has been admitted to probate.

(L. 1955 p. 385 53)



Refusal of letters.

473.090. 1. Notwithstanding the limitation periods provided in section 473.050, the probate division of the circuit court, in its discretion, may at any time refuse to grant letters in the following cases:

(1) When the estate of the decedent is not greater in amount than is allowed by law as exempt property and the allowance to the surviving spouse or unmarried minor children under section 474.260;

(2) When the personal estate of the decedent does not exceed fifteen thousand dollars and there is no widower, widow or unmarried minor children, any creditor of the decedent whose claim has not been barred by section 473.444 or any creditor of the estate may apply for refusal of letters by giving bond in the sum of not less than the value of the estate, the bond to be approved by the court, conditioned upon the creditor's obligating himself or herself to pay, so far as the assets of the estate will permit, the debts of the decedent in the order of their preference, and to distribute the balance, if any, to the persons entitled to such balance under the law. Liability of the sureties on the bond shall terminate unless proceedings against them are instituted within two years after the bond is filed. The court may dispense with the filing of a bond if the court finds the bond is not necessary.

2. Proof may be allowed by or on behalf of the widower, widow, unmarried minor children or creditor before the court of the value and nature of the estate, and if the court is satisfied that no estate will be left after allowing to the surviving spouse or unmarried minor children their exempt property and statutory allowances or that the personal estate does not exceed fifteen thousand dollars when application is made by a creditor, the court may order that no letters of administration shall be issued on the estate, unless, upon the application of other creditors or parties interested, the existence of other or further property is shown.

3. After the making of the order, and until such time as it may be revoked, the surviving spouse, unmarried minor children or creditor may collect and sue for all the personal property belonging to the estate, if a surviving spouse or creditor, in the same manner and with the same effect as if the person had been appointed and qualified as executor or administrator of the estate, and if minor children, in the same manner and with the same effect as now provided by law for proceedings in court by infants in bringing suit.

4. When the estate of the decedent includes real estate and its value, less liens and encumbrances, together with the personal property, is not greater in value than the exempt property and allowances to the surviving spouse or unmarried minor children, the surviving spouse or unmarried minor children are entitled to such real property and may make record evidence of title to such real property without appointment of an executor or administrator by filing in the office of the recorder of deeds of each county where the real property is situated a certified copy of the order of refusal of letters, describing the real property, naming the persons entitled to such real property and showing their right to succeed to the property.

5. The surviving spouse or unmarried minor children who receive property of the estate under this section may retain such property, but a creditor receiving property under this section shall apply the proceeds of such property to debts of the estate in the order in which claims against the estate of deceased persons are now classified and preferred by law, and shall distribute the balance, if any, to the persons entitled thereto under the law. Upon compliance with this procedure, the real estate involved shall not thereafter be taken in execution for any debts or claims against the decedent, but the compliance has the effect of establishing the right of the surviving spouse or unmarried minor children to succeed to the real property; however, nothing in this section shall affect the right of secured creditors with respect to the real property.

6. Any person who has paid funeral expenses or debts of decedent is deemed a creditor for the purpose of making application for the refusal of letters of administration under this section and is subrogated to the rights of the original creditor.

(RSMo 1939 2, A.L. 1955 p. 385 57, A.L. 1957 p. 829, A.L. 1967 p. 639, A.L. 1971 S.B. 19, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634, A.L. 1985 S.B. 35, et al., A.L. 1996 S.B. 494)

Prior revisions: 1929 2; 1919 2; 1909 10

Effective 5-23-96



Clerk's duties as to certain forms--not practice of law.

473.091. Upon request to the judge of the probate division of the circuit court, clerks of the court may under his supervision assist in filling out all forms necessary for obtaining an order of refusal of letters of administration pursuant to section 473.090, and the performance of the duties required by this section shall not constitute the practice of law as defined in section 484.010.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1981 S.B. 117)

Effective 6-10-81



Court may order administration previously commenced pursuant to guardianship law, dispensed with, when.

473.092. At any time during a proceeding commenced pursuant to this chapter, or, after the death of a ward, at any time during a proceeding commenced pursuant to chapter 475, upon petition by any person who could have applied to the court pursuant to section 473.090 or section 473.097, if the court finds the requirements of either section would have been initially met, the court may order the pending matter be completed under section 473.090 or section 473.097 and proceed pursuant to either section as authorized by statute. The court may proceed with or without notice to any interested party.

(L. 1996 S.B. 494)

Effective 5-23-96



Apportionment of property between surviving spouse and children.

473.095. In cases arising under sections 473.090 and 473.093, the court, if it finds that it would be just and equitable to make an apportionment of property between a surviving spouse and unmarried minor children, shall in its order thereunder make such division of the property as will effectuate the apportionment.

(L. 1957 p. 829)



Small estate--distribution of assets without letters, when--affidavit--procedure--fee.

473.097. 1. Distributees of an estate which consists of personal property or real property or both personal and real property have a defeasible right to the personal property, and are entitled to the real property of such estate, as provided in this section, without awaiting the granting of letters testamentary or of administration, if all of the following conditions are met:

(1) The value of the entire estate, less liens, debt, and encumbrances, does not exceed forty thousand dollars;

(2) Thirty days have elapsed since the death of the decedent and no application for letters or for administration or for refusal of letters under section 473.090 is pending or has been granted, or if such refusal has been granted and subsequently revoked;

(3) A bond, in an amount not less than the value of the personal property, approved by the judge or clerk of the probate division is filed by the person making the required affidavit conditioned upon the payment of the debts of the decedent, including any debts to the state of Missouri, the expenses of funeral and burial and compliance with future orders of the court in relation to the estate of the decedent; and further conditioned that any part of the property to which the distributee is not entitled will be delivered to the persons entitled to the property under the law. Liability of the sureties on the bonds provided for in this section terminates unless proceedings against them are instituted within two years after the bond is filed; except that, the court may dispense with the filing of a bond if it finds that the same is not necessary;

(4) A fee, in the amount prescribed in subsection 1 of section 483.580, and when required, the publication cost of the notice to creditors are paid or the proof of payment for such publication is provided to the clerk of the probate division.

2. Notwithstanding the limitation periods set out in section 473.050, the affidavit required by this section may be made by the person designated as personal representative under the will of the decedent, if a will has been presented for probate within the limitation periods specified in section 473.050, otherwise by any distributee entitled to receive property of the decedent any time after thirty days after decedent's death, and shall set forth all of the following:

(1) That the decedent left no will or, if the decedent left a will, that the will was presented for probate within the limitation periods specified in section 473.050;

(2) That all unpaid debts, claims or demands against the decedent or the decedent's estate and all estate taxes due, if any, on the property transfers involved have been or will be paid, except that any liability by the affiant for the payment of unpaid claims or demands shall be limited to the value of the property received;

(3) An itemized description and valuation of property of the decedent. As used in this subdivision, the phrase "property of the decedent" shall not include property which was held by the decedent as a tenant by the entirety or a joint tenant at the time of the decedent's death;

(4) The names and addresses of persons having possession of the property;

(5) The names, addresses and relationship to the decedent of the persons entitled to and who will receive, the specific items of property remaining after payment of claims and debts of the decedent, included in the affidavit;

(6) The facts establishing the right to such specific items of property as prescribed by this section.

The certificate of the clerk shall be annexed to or endorsed on the affidavit and shall show the names and addresses of the persons entitled to the described property under the facts stated in the affidavit and shall recite that the will of decedent has been probated or that no will has been presented to the court and that all estate taxes on the property, if any are due, have been paid.

3. A copy of the affidavit and certificate shall be filed in the office of the clerk of the probate division and copies of the affidavit and certificate shall be furnished by the clerk.

4. The distributees mentioned in this section may establish their right to succeed to the real estate of the decedent by filing a copy of the foregoing affidavit and certificate of the clerk in the office of the recorder of deeds of each county where the real property is situated.

5. When the value of the property listed in the affidavit is more than fifteen thousand dollars, the clerk shall cause to be published in a newspaper of general circulation within the county which qualifies under chapter 493 a notice to creditors of the decedent to file their claims in the court or be forever barred. The notice shall be published once a week for two consecutive weeks. Proof of publication of notice pursuant to this section shall be filed not later than ten days after completion of the publication. The notice shall be in substantially the following form:

To all persons interested in the estate of ..............., Decedent:

On the ........... day of ........................, 20..., a small estate affidavit was filed by the distributees for the decedent under section 473.097, RSMo, with the probate division of the circuit court of .................. County, Missouri.

All creditors of the decedent, who died on ..............., 20..., are notified that section 473.444 sets a limitation period that would bar claims one year after the death of the decedent. A creditor may request that this estate be opened for administration.

Receipt of this notice should not be construed by the recipient to indicate that the recipient may possibly have a beneficial interest in the estate. The nature and extent of any person's interest, if any, may possibly be determined from the affidavit on this estate filed in the probate division of the circuit court of ..................... County, Missouri.

Date of first publication is .............., 20...

................................ ..................

Clerk of the Probate Division

of the Circuit Court

.................. County, Missouri

6. Upon compliance with the procedure required by this section, the personal property and real estate involved shall not thereafter be taken in execution for any debts or claims against the decedent, but such compliance has the same effect in establishing the right of distributees to succeed to the property as if complete administration was had; but nothing in this section affects the right of secured creditors with respect to such property.

7. The affiant shall collect the property of decedent described in the affidavit. The property of decedent shall be liquidated by the affiant to the extent necessary to pay debts of decedent. If the decedent's property is not sufficient to pay such debts, abatement of the shares of the distributees shall occur in accordance with section 473.620. The affiant shall distribute the remaining property to such persons identified in the affidavit as required in subdivision (5) of subsection 2 of this section who are entitled to receive the specific items of personal property, as described in the affidavit, or to have any evidence of such property transferred to such persons. To the extent necessary to facilitate distribution, the affiant may liquidate all or part of decedent's property.

(L. 1955 p. 385 54, A.L. 1957 p. 829, A.L. 1967 p. 640, A.L. 1971 S.B. 19, A.L. 1973 S.B. 112, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1981 S.B. 117, A.L. 1985 S.B. 35, et al., A.L. 1986 S.B. 787, A.L. 1993 S.B. 88, A.L. 1994 S.B. 701, A.L. 1996 S.B. 494, A.L. 2002 H.B. 1537)



Effect of acquittances by distributees of small estate.

473.100. The person making payment, delivery, transfer or issuance of personal property or evidence thereof pursuant to the affidavit prescribed in section 473.097 is discharged and released to the same extent as if made to an executor or administrator of the decedent, and he is not required to see to the application thereof or to inquire into the truth of any statement in the affidavit if made by any other person. If any person to whom the affidavit is delivered refuses to pay, deliver, transfer, or issue any personal property or evidence thereof, it may be recovered or its payment, delivery, transfer, or issuance compelled in an action brought for that purpose by or on behalf of the persons entitled thereto under section 473.097, upon proof of the defeasible right declared by such section. Any person to whom payment, delivery, transfer or issuance is made is answerable and accountable therefor to any administrator or executor of the estate or to the surviving spouse or minor children of the decedent who proceed under section 473.090 or 473.093 or to any other person having a superior right.

(L. 1955 p. 385 55)



Small estate appraised, when.

473.107. The probate division of the circuit court in its discretion may order the appraisal of the property before a certificate is made under section 473.097 or before an order refusing letters is made under section 473.090. The appraisal shall be made by one or more appraisers appointed by the court and the cost thereof shall be paid by the persons entitled to the property in accordance with the order of the court.

(L. 1955 p. 385 58, A.L. 1971 S.B. 163, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634)

Effective 1-2-79



Persons entitled to letters.

473.110. 1. Letters testamentary shall be granted to the personal representative or personal representatives designated in the will. If part of the persons designated in the will are found by the court to be incompetent, unsuitable or improper or are disqualified or fail to apply for letters, letters shall be granted to the others designated, and if all personal representatives designated are found by the court to be incompetent, unsuitable or improper or are disqualified or fail to apply, letters shall be granted to some other qualified person.

2. Letters of administration shall be granted to the following persons if otherwise qualified:

(1) To the husband or wife;

(2) To one or more of those who are entitled to distribution of the estate, who the court shall believe will best manage and preserve the estate. A conservator of a distributee is not entitled to preference;

(3) If the court believes no one of the persons entitled to administer is a competent and suitable person, or if any such person fails to apply for letters when directed by the court, some other person may be appointed;

(4) A person entitled to letters of administration under subdivision (1) or (2) of this subsection, or who would be entitled thereto but for section 473.117, may, if he has attained the age of eighteen years and has sufficient mental capacity for the purpose, nominate a qualified person to act as personal representative. Any such person may renounce his right to nominate or to be appointed by an appropriate writing filed with the court. When two or more persons share a priority, those of them who do not renounce must concur in nominating another to act for them or in applying for appointment.

3. A natural person or corporate fiduciary, otherwise qualified, who is a nonresident of this state may be appointed as a personal representative.

(RSMo 1939 7, 11, A.L. 1955 p. 385 60, A.L. 1957 p. 829, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1983 S.B. 44 & 45, A.L. 1985 S.B. 35, et al.)

Prior revisions: 1929 7, 11; 1919 7, 11; 1909 15, 19



Letters granted to others, when.

473.113. Letters may be granted at any time to any person deemed suitable if the persons entitled to preference file their renunciation thereof, in writing, with the clerk of the court.

(RSMo 1939 9, A.L. 1955 p. 385 61, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Prior revisions: 1929 9; 1919 9; 1909 17

Effective 1-1-81



Persons and corporations disqualified as personal representative--designation required--service of process, how made.

473.117. 1. None of the following persons shall be appointed as a personal representative:

(1) No full-time judge of any court of this state or clerk, deputy clerk or division clerk of any court, but a judge, clerk, deputy clerk or division clerk may serve as a personal representative for a decedent who was a spouse or who was within the third degree of relationship by consanguinity or affinity as calculated according to the civil law;

(2) A person under the age of eighteen years or of unsound mind;

(3) A person who is under legal disability as a result of conviction of a crime;

(4) A habitual drunkard;

(5) Except as otherwise provided by section 362.600, a corporation, partnership or association organized under the law of a state or country other than the state of Missouri, or any United States national banking association having its principal place of business outside the state of Missouri;

(6) No personal representative of a personal representative, in consequence thereof, shall be a personal representative of the first decedent.

2. When any corporation is named as personal representative in any will hereafter executed, and qualifies as such, the presumption is that the will was not prepared by a salaried employee of such corporation. However, upon the application of any heir or devisee, made in the probate division of the circuit court of the county for the removal of such personal representative, said presumption may be rebutted by evidence satisfactory to the court hearing the application, unless the will or some codicil or certificate attached thereto contains a recital that at or before the execution of the will the testator had advice or counsel in relation thereto from someone not under salary from such corporation. In the absence of such recital, the court may on such application and upon satisfactory evidence that said will was prepared by a salaried employee of the corporation revoke the appointment of and remove such corporation as personal representative.

3. Before a nonresident of this state or a corporation organized under the laws of another state or country is issued letters testamentary or of administration he, she or it shall file in the probate division of the circuit court a designation, including the signature and address, of a resident of this state, or a corporation of this state authorized to administer trusts, as agent for the service of process on and the receipt of notice by such nonresident or foreign corporation. This designation shall be recited in the letters testamentary or of administration. Such a designation may be revoked only by a new designation of an agent for service and notice in this state, which shall be endorsed on the letters testamentary or of administration. By filing such designation, the nonresident submits personally to the jurisdiction of the court in all proceedings relating to the administration of the estate and to the performance of his fiduciary duties until discharged of those duties by the court.

4. Service of process may be made upon a personal representative who is a nonresident of this state, or a corporation organized under the laws of another state or country, by registered or certified mail, addressed to his, her or its last reasonably ascertainable address. Notice by ordinary first class mail is sufficient if registered or certified mail service to the addressee is unavailable. Service may be made upon such a personal representative in the manner in which service could have been made under other laws of this state on either the personal representative or his decedent immediately prior to death. If service is made upon a personal representative as provided in this subsection, he shall be allowed at least thirty days within which to appear or respond.

(RSMo 1939 6, 10, A.L. 1955 p. 385 62, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1981 S.B. 117, A.L. 1985 S.B. 35, et al., A.L. 1986 S.B. 787, A.L. 1987 H.B. 637)

Prior revisions: 1929 6, 10; 1919 6, 10; 1909 14, 18



Form of letters testamentary.

473.120. Letters testamentary issued to executors may be in the following form: County of ....... ss.

The state of Missouri to all persons to whom these presents shall come, greeting: Know ye, that the last will of ......, deceased, has, in due form of law, been exhibited, proved and recorded, and inasmuch as it appears that ..... has been appointed executor in and by the said last will to execute the same and to the end that the property of the testator may be preserved for those who appear to have a legal right or interest therein, and that the said last will may be executed according to the request of the testator, we do hereby authorize ........, as such executor, to take possession and control of all personal property, owned by the said .......... at the time of his death, except the exempt property of the surviving spouse or unmarried minor children, in whosesoever possession the same is found and to perform and fulfill all duties enjoined upon him by the will, so far as there shall be property and the law charges him, and in general to do and perform all other things which are required of him by law.

In testimony whereof, I, ........, clerk of the probate division of the circuit court in and for said county of ........, have hereunto signed my name and affixed the seal of said probate division, at office, this ..... day of ....., A.D. .....

................................................

Clerk of the Probate Division

(RSMo 1939 37, A.L. 1955 p. 385 63, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634)

Prior revisions: 1929 37; 1919 36; 1909 44

Effective 1-2-79



Form of letters of administration.

473.123. Letters of administration issued in this state may be in the following form: County of ......... ss.

The state of Missouri to all persons to whom these presents shall come, greeting: Know ye, that whereas ............, late of the county of ............, died intestate, as it is said, having at the time of his death, property in this state, which may be lost, destroyed or diminished in value if speedy care be not taken of the same. To the end, therefore, that said property may be collected, preserved and disposed of according to law, we do hereby appoint ......... administrator of all personal property owned by ............ at the time of his death, except the exempt property of the surviving spouse or unmarried minor children, with full power and authority to secure and dispose of said property according to law, and collect all moneys due said decedent, and in general to do and perform all other acts and things which are required of him by law.

In testimony whereof, I ........., clerk of the probate division of the circuit court in and for the county of ............ aforesaid, have hereunto signed my name and affixed the seal of said probate division, at office, this ......... day of ..................., A.D. 20...

............................. ....................

Clerk of the Probate Division

(RSMo 1939 38, A.L. 1955 p. 385 64, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634)

Prior revisions: 1929 38; 1919 37; 1909 45

Effective 1-2-79



Letters c.t.a. and d.b.n., form.

473.127. In all cases where letters of administration with will annexed, letters of administration de bonis non, during minority or absence, are issued by the judge or clerk of the probate division, the same shall be issued in conformity to the foregoing forms, as near as may be, taking care to make the necessary variations, additions or omissions to suit each particular case.

(RSMo 1939 39, A.L. 1955 p. 385 65, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634)

Prior revisions: 1929 39; 1919 38; 1909 46

Effective 1-2-79



Letters or copies, evidence.

473.130. Letters or copies of the record thereof, duly certified under the seal of the proper court, shall be evidence.

(RSMo 1939 36, A.L. 1955 p. 385 66)

Prior revisions: 1929 36; 1919 35; 1909 43



Administrator during minority or absence.

473.133. If the executor named in a will is a minor or absent from the state, letters may be granted, during the time of minority or absence, to some other person who shall take charge of the property and administer the same according to law, under the direction of the court.

(RSMo 1939 13, A.L. 1955 p. 385 67)

Prior revisions: 1929 13; 1919 13; 1909 21



Administrator pending contest, appointed when--duties.

473.137. 1. If the validity of a will is contested by any person who, after a hearing in the probate division, is found to be interested in the probate of the will, the court shall grant letters of administration to the executor named in the will, if he has no beneficial interest in the estate save the compensation allowed by law to executors, upon giving bond in such amount as the court may require.

2. If, after such hearing, it appears that the executor named in the will has an interest adverse to any such contestant of the will, the court may, in its discretion, grant letters of administration to some disinterested person or corporation, who shall give proper bond.

3. An administrator appointed pursuant to this section shall proceed with the administration of the estate until termination of the will contest, at which time he shall account to the executor or legal administrator when qualified, and, if it shall appear to the court that the decedent died possessed of real estate in the state, the court shall direct him to take charge of and manage such real estate until the termination of such will contest.

(RSMo 1939 14, A.L. 1955 p. 385 68, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634)

Prior revision: 1929 14

Effective 1-2-79



Resignation by executor or administrator, procedure, effect.

473.139. Upon petition of an executor or administrator, and after the filing of his final settlement as required by subdivision (3) of subsection 2 of section 473.540, the court, for good cause shown, may permit him to resign and upon accepting his resignation shall revoke his letters. The effect of the resignation and revocation is the same as in other cases of revocation of letters. The petition may be heard without notice or after giving notice to the persons and in the manner directed by the court.

(L. 1957 p. 829)



Removal of personal representative.

473.140. If any personal representative becomes mentally incapacitated or is convicted of a felony or other infamous crime, or becomes an habitual drunkard, or in any manner incapable or unsuitable to execute the trust reposed in him, or fails to discharge his official duties, or wastes or mismanages the estate, or acts so as to endanger any corepresentative, or fails to answer any citation and attachment to make settlement, the court, upon its own motion, or upon complaint in writing made by any person interested supported by affidavit, after notice to the personal representative, and to the attorney of record, if any, of any personal representative who cannot be served with notice in this state, shall hear the matter and may revoke the letters granted.

(RSMo 1939 10, 43, A.L. 1955 p. 385 69, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1983 S.B. 44 & 45)

Prior revisions: 1929 10, 43; 1919 10, 42; 1909 18, 50



Revocation of letters on finding will.

473.143. 1. If, after letters of administration are granted, a will of the deceased is found, and probate thereof granted, the letters shall be revoked, and letters testamentary granted.

2. If a will is proved, and letters thereon granted, and the probate thereof is afterward set aside, the letters shall be revoked, and other letters granted of the goods unadministered.

(RSMo 1939 40, 41, A.L. 1955 p. 385 70)

Prior revisions: 1929 40, 41; 1919 39, 40; 1909 47, 48



Administrator d.b.n., when appointed.

473.147. 1. If all the executors or the administrator of an estate die or resign or their letters are revoked, letters of administration of the goods remaining unadministered shall be granted in the discretion of the court to any qualified beneficiary or beneficiaries mentioned in the will, if any, or to any person to whom administration could have been granted if original letters had not been obtained.

2. If, after final settlement of an estate is had and the executor or administrator has been discharged, unadministered assets of the estate are discovered, letters of administration of the goods remaining unadministered, if there are unpaid allowed claims or if other good cause is shown, may be granted to those to whom administration would have been granted if the original letters had not been obtained. Any person to whom such letters are granted shall make his final settlement and be discharged as soon as possible after letters are granted.

3. Any administrator appointed under this section shall perform like duties and incur like liabilities as a former executor or administrator.

(RSMo 1939 47, A.L. 1955 p. 385 71)

Prior revisions: 1929 47; 1919 46; 1909 54



Remaining executor or administrator to continue.

473.150. If there is more than one executor of an estate, and the letters of part of them are revoked or surrendered, or part of them dies, those who remain shall discharge all the duties required by law respecting the estate, except that the court, if it finds same to be in the interests of the estate, may revoke the letters testamentary of the surviving executor, and issue letters of administration with the will annexed to the survivor and some other qualified person to whom administration could have been granted if original letters had not been issued.

(RSMo 1939 46, A.L. 1955 p. 385 72)

Prior revisions: 1929 46; 1919 45; 1909 53



Compensation of personal representatives, accountants and attorneys.

473.153. 1. If a testator by will makes provision for the compensation of his personal representative, that shall be allowed and taken as his full compensation unless he files in the court a written instrument renouncing all claim for the compensation provided by the will before qualifying as personal representative. When no compensation is provided in the will, or when there is no will, or when the personal representative renounces all claim to the compensation provided in the will, the compensation of the personal representative shall be determined pursuant to this section. When there is only one personal representative he shall be allowed as the minimum compensation for his services the following percentages of the value of the personal property administered and of the proceeds of all real property sold under order of the probate court:

On the first $ 5,000, 5 percent;

On the next 20,000, 4 percent;

On the next 75,000, 3 percent;

On the next 300,000, 2 3/4 percent;

On the next 600,000, 2 1/2 percent;

On all over 1,000,000, 2 percent. In any case where reasonable compensation to the personal representative is in excess of the minimum provided in the above schedule, the court shall allow such additional compensation as will make the compensation of the personal representative reasonable and adequate. Performance by the personal representative of extraordinary services is not necessary to entitle him to such additional compensation. Such percentages shall be computed on the value of the personal property at the time of disbursement or distribution thereof, except that where it is necessary to allow compensation before the property is disbursed or distributed, or to allow compensation to a personal representative who has been succeeded by another personal representative, the court may determine the fair market value of property at the time of making the allowance and base such percentage thereon.

2. When there are two or more joint or successor personal representatives they shall be allowed in the aggregate reasonable compensation for their services, not exceeding twice the minimum provided for in the schedule set forth in subsection 1 of this section or five percent of the value of the personal property administered and of the proceeds of the real property sold under order of the probate division, whichever is less, except that this maximum limitation shall not apply if possession has been taken of real property pursuant to order of the probate division but such real property has not been sold under order of the probate division, or if extraordinary services have been performed. Where there are two or more joint or successor personal representatives the compensation allowed them shall be apportioned among them by the court according to the services actually rendered by each, or as they may agree.

3. Attorneys performing services for the estate at the instance of the personal representative shall be allowed out of the estate as the minimum compensation for their services sums equal to the percentages set forth in the schedule contained in subsection 1 of this section. In any case where reasonable compensation to the attorneys is in excess of the minimum provided in the schedule the court shall allow such additional compensation as will make the compensation of the attorneys reasonable and adequate. Performance by the attorneys of extraordinary services is not necessary to entitle them to such additional compensation. If the personal representative is an attorney, no allowance shall be made for legal services performed by him or at his instance unless such services are authorized by the will or by order of the court or are consented to by all heirs and devisees whose rights may be adversely affected by the allowance. In addition, when one member of a law firm or professional corporation serves as personal representative of the estate and another member of the same law firm or professional corporation serves as the attorney for the estate, only one fee as set forth in subsection 1 of this section shall be allowed.

4. A personal representative may employ independent accountants, certified public accountants, or tax specialists holding a valid permit to practice before the United States Treasury Department to assist him in filing estate tax returns, federal and state income tax returns, or establishing records of account and reporting on financial results in those estates requiring this service and such person shall be allowed reasonable compensation for such service as determined by the court. If the personal representative is a certified public accountant, tax specialist holding a valid permit to practice before the United States Treasury Department or an independent accountant, no allowance shall be made for accountant services performed by him or at his instance unless such services are authorized by will or by order of the court or are consented to by all heirs and devisees whose rights may be adversely affected by the allowance. In addition, when one member of an accounting firm or professional corporation serves as an accountant for the estate, only one fee as set forth in subsection 1 of this section will be allowed.

5. If the court finds that any accountant's services or actions in connection therewith are wrong, improper or injurious to the estate, no accountant fee whatsoever shall be allowed.

6. Compensation properly allowable hereunder may be allowed to personal representatives or attorneys upon final settlement, or partial compensation upon application therefor, at any time or times during administration. If the court finds that a personal representative has failed to discharge his duties as such in any respect it may deny him any compensation whatsoever or may reduce the compensation which would otherwise be allowed. If the court finds that any attorney's services or actions in connection therewith are wrong, improper or injurious to the estate, no attorney fee whatever shall be allowed.

7. No personal representative, other than one who is an attorney, may appear in court except by attorney, and such attorney may not be a salaried employee of the personal representative, but when the personal representative is an attorney, nothing herein shall prevent his being represented in court by a partner, associate or employee who is an attorney. Any personal representative may prepare and file his own inventories and settlements.

(L. 1955 p. 385 73, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1989 H.B. 145)



Compensation of accountants and attorneys (first class counties and St. Louis City).

473.155. 1. In all counties of the first class and St. Louis City, other provisions of law notwithstanding, attorneys performing services for the estate at the instance of the personal representative shall be allowed out of the estate as the minimum compensation for their services sums equal to the percentages set forth in the schedule contained in subsection 1 of section 473.153. In any case where reasonable compensation to the attorneys is in excess of the minimum provided in the schedule the court shall allow such additional compensation as will make the compensation of the attorneys reasonable and adequate. Performance by the attorneys of extraordinary service is not necessary to entitle them to such additional compensation.

2. If the personal representative is an attorney, no allowance shall be made for legal services performed by him or at his instance unless such services are authorized by the will or by order of the court or are consented to by all heirs and devisees whose rights may be adversely affected by the allowance. In addition, when one member of a law firm or professional corporation serves as personal representative of the estate and another member of the same law firm or professional corporation serves as the attorney for the estate, only one fee as set forth in subsection 1 of section 473.153 shall be allowed.

3. A personal representative may employ independent accountants, certified public accountants, or tax specialists holding a valid permit to practice before the United States Treasury Department to assist him in filing estate tax returns, federal and state income tax returns, or establishing records of account and reporting on financial results in those estates requiring this service and such person shall be allowed reasonable compensation for such service as determined by the court. If the personal representative is a certified public accountant, tax specialist holding a valid permit to practice before the United States Treasury Department or an independent accountant, no allowance shall be made for accountant services performed by him or at his instance unless such services are authorized by will or by order of the court or are consented to by all heirs and devisees whose rights may be adversely affected by the allowance. In addition, when one member of an accounting firm or professional corporation serves as an accountant for the estate, only one fee as set forth in subsection 1 of this section will be allowed.

4. Nothing in subsection 2 of this section shall apply to attorneys employed by any duly elected public administrator who is an attorney.

(L. 1965 p. 634 1, 2, 3, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1989 H.B. 145)



Bond of personal representative--conditions of bond.

473.157. 1. Except as provided in section 473.160, every personal representative, before entering upon the duties of his office, shall execute and file a bond, approved by the judge or the clerk, procured at the expense of the estate, with sufficient security, in an amount fixed by the judge or clerk for the protection of interested parties.

2. The condition of the bond shall be as follows: "The condition of the bond is that if ............ personal representative of the estate of ............, deceased, shall faithfully administer said estate, account for, pay and deliver all money and property of said estate and perform all other things touching said administration required by law, or the order or decree of any court having jurisdiction, then the above bond to be void; otherwise to remain in full force."

(RSMo 1939 18, 19, A.L. 1955 p. 385 74, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Prior revisions: 1929 18, 19; 1919 17, 19; 1909 25, 26

Effective 1-1-81



Bond not required, when.

473.160. 1. When, by the terms of the will, the testator expresses a wish that no bond be required of the personal representative, no bond shall be required unless the court, in its discretion, finds it proper to require it; but the court, in its discretion, may at any subsequent time require a bond to be given.

2. Any assets of an estate may be deposited at any time with a depositary upon such terms as may be prescribed by order of the court and the amount of the bond of the personal representative may be reduced in proportion to the value of the assets deposited. Such assets may not thereafter be withdrawn from deposit without an order of the court which may also require that an additional bond be filed and approved before the withdrawal.

3. No bond shall be required of any corporation which at the time of its appointment by the court as personal representative has a certificate of the director of finance of the state of Missouri that such corporation has complied with the provisions of section 362.590.

4. No bond shall be required if the court, upon good cause shown, finds that a bond is not required for the protection of interested parties.

(L. 1955 p. 385 75, A.L. 1971 S.B. 163, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1985 S.B. 35, et al.)



Agreements with surety as to deposit of assets.

473.163. It is lawful for the executor or administrator to agree with his surety for the deposit of any or all moneys and other assets of the estate with a bank, safe deposit or trust company, authorized by law to do business as such, or other depositary approved by the court, if such deposit is otherwise proper, in such manner as to prevent the withdrawal of the moneys or other assets without the written consent of the surety, or on order of the court made on such notice to the surety as the court may direct.

(L. 1955 p. 385 76)



Execution of bond.

473.167. Each bond shall be signed by the executor or administrator and his surety and shall be acknowledged before the judge or clerk or before some officer authorized to take acknowledgments of deeds and a certificate of the acknowledgment shall be endorsed thereon.

(RSMo 1939 22, A.L. 1955 p. 385 77)

Prior revisions: 1929 22; 1919 21; 1909 29



Obligees of bond--liability of surety.

473.170. The bond of the executor or administrator shall run to the state of Missouri to the use of all persons interested in the estate and shall be for the security and benefit of such persons. The sureties shall be jointly and severally liable with the executor or administrator and with each other.

(L. 1955 p. 385 78)



Bond of joint executors or administrators.

473.173. When two or more persons are appointed executors or administrators of the same estate and are required to give a bond, the court may require either a separate bond from each or one bond from all of them, and none shall act or intermeddle in the estate except those giving bond as required by the court.

(L. 1955 p. 385 79)



Affidavit of personal sureties.

473.177. Each personal surety shall execute and file with the court an affidavit that he owns property subject to execution, of a value over and above his liabilities, equal to the amount of the bond, and shall include in such affidavit the total amount of his obligations as surety on other official or statutory bonds. The affidavit shall be attached to and kept with the bond in the files of the court.

(L. 1955 p. 385 80)



Persons not acceptable as sureties.

473.180. No judge of probate, sheriff, marshal, clerk of a court, or deputy of either, and no attorney at law, shall be taken as surety for any executor or administrator.

(RSMo 1939 21, A.L. 1955 p. 385 81)

Prior revisions: 1929 21; 1919 20; 1909 28



Approval of bond.

473.183. The judge or clerk shall examine and approve or reject the bond of each executor or administrator and the approval or rejection thereof shall be endorsed thereon and entered on the records of the court. In the case of personal sureties, the judge or clerk shall take special care to accept as sureties, only those who are solvent and sufficient and who are not bound in too many other bonds. Before giving approval, the judge or clerk may take testimony or examine on oath the applicant or persons offered as his sureties as to the value and character of the assets of the personal surety. If the bond is rejected the executor or administrator, within such time as the judge, or in his absence, the clerk directs, shall give a bond with satisfactory sureties.

(RSMo 1939 22, 24, 25, A.L. 1955 p. 385 82)

Prior revisions: 1929 22, 24, 25; 1919 21, 23, 24; 1909 29, 31, 32



Bond valid though rejected.

473.187. Any bond taken by the clerk is valid until a new bond is given, notwithstanding its subsequent rejection by the court.

(RSMo 1939 26, A.L. 1955 p. 385 83)

Prior revisions: 1929 26; 1919 25; 1909 33



Sufficiency of bond to be shown on settlements.

473.190. Whenever a final settlement is not made within one year, the court, before extending the time for making such settlement and before approving any annual settlement thereafter made, shall require the executor or administrator to establish the sufficiency of his bond and if the court has reason to believe that any surety thereon has become a nonresident of the state or has died or become insolvent or if, for any reason, the bond appears insufficient the court shall direct the executor or administrator to give new or additional security.

(RSMo 1939 22, A.L. 1955 p. 385 84)

Prior revisions: 1929 22; 1919 21; 1909 29



Inquiry into condition of sureties--order for new bond.

473.193. If the judge has reasonable grounds to believe that a surety on the bond of any executor or administrator has died, removed from the state or is or likely to become insolvent or that the principal on the bond is likely to become insolvent or is wasting the estate or that the bond was not taken according to law, he at any time, either on his own motion or on the motion of an interested party, including a surety, may set a time and place for examination into the matters and shall give notice thereof to the principal in the bond. The court, after such hearing, may direct the executor or administrator to give another bond.

(RSMo 1939 27, 28, 29, 32, A.L. 1955 p. 385 85)

Prior revisions: 1929 27, 28, 29, 32; 1919 26, 27, 28, 31; 1909 34, 35, 36, 39



Court may require, increase or decrease bond, when.

473.197. The court may require bond, or increase or decrease the amount of the bond of the personal representative when good cause therefor appears. The clerk shall inquire into the adequacy of the bond upon the filing of an inventory, appraisement or settlement or when real estate is sold, mortgaged, leased or taken possession of under order of court and, if the bond is found to be in an amount in excess of or less than that last fixed under section 473.157, the court shall enter an order requiring an additional bond or reducing the penalty of the existing bond.

(L. 1955 p. 385 86, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Letters revoked on failure to give bond.

473.200. If an executor or administrator fails to give a bond as required by the court, within the time fixed by the court, his letters shall be revoked.

(RSMo 1939 31, 32, A.L. 1955 p. 385 87)

Prior revisions: 1929 31, 32; 1919 30, 31; 1909 38, 39



Effect of new bond.

473.203. Any bond given to replace a former bond, when given and approved, discharges the former sureties from any liabilities arising from any misconduct of the principal after the filing of same, and the former sureties are only liable for misconduct which happened prior to the giving of the new bond. The executor or administrator shall be required to file an account of his administration to the date of the new bond. The new bond binds the sureties thereon with respect to acts and omissions of the executor or administrator from the time when the sureties on the original bond are no longer liable therefor, or from such prior time as the court directs.

(RSMo 1939 30, A.L. 1955 p. 385 88)

Prior revisions: 1929 30; 1919 29; 1909 37



Execution of bond deemed appearance by surety--procedure on breach of obligation of bond.

473.207. 1. The execution of the bond of a personal representative is deemed an appearance by the surety in the proceeding for the administration of the estate including all hearings with respect to the bond.

2. On breach of the obligation of the bond of the personal representative, the court, after notice to the obligors in the bond and to such other persons as the court directs, may summarily determine the damages as a part of the proceeding for the administration of the estate, and by appropriate process enforce the collection thereof from those liable on the bond. The determination and enforcement may be made by the court upon its own motion or upon application of a successor personal representative, or of any other personal representative, or of any other interested person. The court may hear the application at the time of settling the accounts of the defaulting personal representative or at such other time as the court may direct. Damages shall be assessed on behalf of all interested persons and may be paid over to the successor or other nondefaulting personal representative and distributed as other assets held by the personal representative in his official capacity.

3. If the court has already determined the liability of the personal representative, a surety shall not be permitted thereafter to deny liability in any action or hearing to determine their liability; but the surety may intervene in any hearing to determine the liability of the personal representative.

4. The provisions of subsections 1, 2, and 3 of this section shall apply to a depositary which has executed a certification pursuant to section 473.160.

5. In assessing damages pursuant to this section, the court may apportion the losses sustained between the depositary and the obligors on the bond of the personal representative on the following basis:

(1) Those damages sustained as a result of the failure of the depositary to hold the assets delivered to it in restricted custody shall be assessed against the depositary and the personal representative, together with that proportion of the consequential damages determined to have resulted by reason of such failure;

(2) All other damages sustained as a result of the breach of the obligation of the bond shall be assessed against the obligors on the bond.

(L. 1955 p. 385 89, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Successor may sue on bond.

473.210. The succeeding administrator, or remaining executor or administrator, may proceed in any court having jurisdiction in civil actions against an executor or administrator and his sureties, or either of them or against any other person possessed of any part of the estate.

(RSMo 1939 55, A.L. 1955 p. 385 90)

Prior revisions: 1929 55; 1919 54; 1909 62



Limitations on suits.

473.213. Proceedings upon the bond of a personal representative shall not be brought subsequent to one year after the personal representative's discharge.

(L. 1955 p. 385 91, A.L. 1996 S.B. 494)

Effective 5-23-96



Action on bond generally.

473.217. The bond of an executor or administrator may be sued on at the instance of any party injured, in the name of the state, to the use of such party, for waste or mismanagement of the estate, or other breach of the conditions of the bond; and damages shall be assessed thereon as on bonds with collateral conditions.

(RSMo 1939 281, A.L. 1955 p. 385 92)

Prior revisions: 1929 282; 1919 280; 1909 287



Inventory and appraisement.

473.220. Within thirty days after letters are granted on the estate of a deceased member of any partnership, the surviving partner or partners shall file a verified inventory of the partnership in the probate division in which letters are issued on the estate, to be a part of the court records of the administration of the decedent's estate. If no letters are issued on the decedent's estate in this state the surviving partners shall file the inventory within sixty days after the death of a partner in the probate division of the circuit court of the county of which the decedent was a resident at the time of his death or, if a nonresident, in the probate division of the circuit court of the county in which the partnership had its principal business office in this state, the inventory to be indexed under the name of the deceased partner and also the name of the partnership and to be a part of the court records of the administration of the partnership. The inventory shall state the proportionate share of the deceased partner, the aggregate value of the assets of the partnership and the aggregate of its liabilities, but no detailed list of assets or liabilities is required unless ordered by the court. Upon the verified petition of any interested party or on its own motion the court, in its discretion, may order the surviving partners to file a detailed list of assets and liabilities of the partnership and it also may order that the assets of the partnership be appraised as provided by law for the appraisal of the assets of a decedent. On the request of any surviving partner, the court may issue a certificate reciting that he has filed an inventory of the assets of the partnership in accordance with this section and that he will be held to account to the executor or administrator of the estate of the decedent in accordance with the Uniform Partnership Law.

(L. 1955 p. 385 93, A.L. 1957 p. 829, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634)

Effective 1-2-79



Settlement.

473.223. The surviving partner may continue in possession of the partnership estate, pay its debts, and settle its business, shall account to the executor or administrator of the estate of the decedent, and shall pay over such balances as from time to time are payable to him. Upon the verified petition of the executor or administrator or on its own motion the probate division whenever it appears necessary may order the surviving partner to account to the court.

(L. 1955 p. 385 94, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634)

Effective 1-2-79



Security.

473.227. If the surviving partner commits waste or if it appears to the court that it is for the best interest of the estate of the decedent, the probate division may order the surviving partner to give security for the faithful settlement of the partnership affairs and the payment to the executor or administrator of any amount due the estate.

(L. 1955 p. 385 95, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634)

Effective 1-2-79



Citation of partner.

473.230. If the surviving partner fails or refuses to file the inventory, list of liabilities, or appraisal or it appears proper to order the surviving partner to account to the probate division or to file a bond, the court shall order a citation to issue requiring the surviving partner to appear and show cause why he has not filed an inventory, list of liabilities, or appraisal or why he should not account to the court or file a bond. The citation shall be served not less than ten days before the return day designated therein and shall be served and returned in the manner provided for summons in civil cases. If the surviving partner neglects or refuses to file an inventory, list of liabilities, or appraisal or fails to account to the court or to file a bond, after he has been directed to do so, the court may commit him to jail until he complies with the order of the court. Where the surviving partner fails to file a bond after being ordered to do so by the court, the court may also appoint a receiver of the partnership estate with like powers and duties of receivers in chancery, and order the costs and expenses of the proceedings to be paid out of the partnership estate or out of the estate of decedent, or by the surviving partner personally or partly by each of the parties.

(L. 1955 p. 385 96, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634)

Effective 1-2-79



Inventory and appraisement--classification of property.

473.233. 1. Within thirty days after letters are granted, unless a longer time is granted by the court, the personal representative shall make and return an inventory and appraisement, in one written instrument, of all of the property of the decedent, including exempt property, which comes to his possession or knowledge, a statement of all encumbrances, liens, and other charges on any item, and all other property possessed by decedent at the time of his death. The property shall be classified therein as follows:

(1) Real property, with plat or survey description and the street address or approximate direction and distance from any city or town, and the popular name thereof, if any;

(2) Furniture, household goods, and wearing apparel, but no detailed appraisement or listing of the items thereof is required;

(3) Corporate stocks described by name, number of shares, class of stock;

(4) Mortgages, bonds, notes, and other written evidences of debt, together with interest due thereon, described by name of debtor, recording data, and other identification;

(5) Bank accounts, insurance policies payable to the personal representative, and money;

(6) All other personal property accurately identified, including a statement of the decedent's proportionate share in any partnership and of its net value as shown in the inventory required by section 473.220. No detailed appraisement or listing of the assets of the partnership property is required in the inventory filed by the personal representative;

(7) All property possessed but not owned by the decedent at his death shall be listed in the inventory, but separately from other property, together with a statement as to the knowledge of the personal representative as to its ownership.

2. At any time when it appears necessary, the judge or clerk may authorize the personal representative to employ a qualified and disinterested appraiser to assist him in ascertaining the fair market value, as of the date of the decedent's death, of any asset the value of which may be subject to reasonable doubt. Different persons may be employed to appraise different kinds of assets included in the estate. The name and address of any appraiser shall be indicated on the inventory with the item or items he appraised.

(L. 1955 p. 385 97, A.L. 1957 p. 829, A.L. 1959 S.B. 141, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1981 S.B. 117, A.L. 1996 S.B. 494 merged with S.B. 869)

Effective 5-23-96 (S.B. 494) 8-28-96 (S.B. 869)



Affidavit to inventory.

473.237. The administrator or executor and appraisers shall annex to the inventory and appraisement an affidavit stating that it is a full inventory and description of all the property of the decedent which has come into the possession or knowledge of the executor or administrator, and of the property in the possession of the decedent at his death, as far as they know, and an appraisement of all the property subject to appraisement. The executor or administrator shall make an additional affidavit stating that he was not in debt or bound in any contract to the decedent at the time of his death, except as stated in the inventory and appraisement. The administrator or executor has power to administer the oaths for the affidavits required by this section and section 473.233.

(RSMo 1939 59, A.L. 1955 p. 385 98, A.L. 1957 p. 829, A.L. 1959 S.B. 141)

Prior revisions: 1929 59; 1919 58; 1909 66



Additional inventory.

473.240. If, after making the first inventory and appraisement, any other real or personal estate of the deceased comes to the possession or knowledge of the executor or administrator, he shall file a similar additional inventory and appraisement thereof.

(RSMo 1939 60, A.L. 1955 p. 385 99)

Prior revisions: 1929 60; 1919 59; 1909 67



Compensation of appraisers.

473.243. The court shall make a reasonable allowance to each appraiser for his compensation, taking into consideration the amount and character of the services rendered by each, and his reasonable travel and other expenses.

(L. 1955 p. 385 100)



Debt of executor not discharged.

473.247. If any person appoints his debtor executor of his will, the appointment does not discharge the debt, but the debt constitutes an asset in his hands.

(RSMo 1939 101, A.L. 1955 p. 385 101)

Prior revisions: 1929 101; 1919 100; 1909 108



Debt of administrator, assets.

473.250. All debts due by an administrator to his testator or intestate are considered assets in his hands.

(RSMo 1939 100, A.L. 1955 p. 385 102)

Prior revisions: 1929 100; 1919 99; 1909 107



Inventory as evidence.

473.253. Inventories and appraisements may be given in evidence, but are not conclusive for or against any executor or administrator, but other evidence may be introduced to vary the effect thereof.

(RSMo 1939 74, A.L. 1955 p. 385 103)

Prior revisions: 1929 74; 1919 73; 1909 81



Devolution of estate at death.

473.260. When a person dies, his real and personal property, except exempt property, passes to the persons to whom it is devised by his last will, or, in the absence of such disposition, to the persons who succeed to his estate as his heirs; but it is subject to the possession of the executor or administrator and to the election of the surviving spouse and is chargeable with the expenses of administering the estate, the payment of other claims and allowances to the family, except as otherwise provided in this law.

(L. 1955 p. 385 105)



Possession of assets.

473.263. 1. Every executor or administrator has a right to and shall take possession of all the personal property of the decedent except exempt property of the surviving spouse and unmarried minor children, and administer it in accordance with this law.

2. The court, on its own motion or on the motion of any interested person, may order the executor or administrator to take possession of the real estate of the decedent when necessary for the payment of claims or for the preservation thereof. When ordered to take possession of real estate, the executor or administrator shall pay the taxes and collect the rents and earnings thereon until the estate is settled or until delivered by order of the court to the distributees. He may rent the real property of the estate for a period not exceeding one year. He shall keep in tenantable repair the buildings and fixtures under his control and may protect the same by insurance. He may maintain an action for the possession of the real property or to determine the title to the same.

(L. 1955 p. 385 106)

CROSS REFERENCES:

Exempt property and allowances to surviving spouse and children, 474.250 to 474.280

Uniform act for simplification of fiduciary security transfers, 403.250 to 403.350



Assets for payment of claims.

473.267. The real and personal property liable for the payment of claims includes all property transferred by the decedent with intent to defraud his creditors or any of them, or transferred by any other means which is in law void as against his creditors or any of them, and the executor or administrator may recover the property, so far as necessary for the payment of claims, and take such steps as are necessary to recover the same. Property recovered by the executor or administrator constitutes general assets for the payment of all creditors; but no property so transferred shall be taken from anyone who purchased it for a valuable consideration, in good faith and without actual or constructive knowledge of the fraud.

(L. 1955 p. 385 107)



Collection of debts, prosecution and defense of suits.

473.270. Executors and administrators shall collect all money and debts of every kind due to the decedent, and give receipts and discharges therefor, and shall commence and prosecute all actions which may be maintained and are necessary in the course of his administration, and defend all actions brought against him.

(RSMo 1939 94, A.L. 1955 p. 385 108)

Prior revisions: 1929 94; 1919 93; 1909 101

CROSS REFERENCES:

Administrator of deceased life tenant to collect rents due deceased, remedy, RSMo 441.160, 441.170

Execution ordered by administrator d.b.n., when, RSMo 513.080



Actions instituted by or against decedent, duties.

473.273. Executors and administrators shall prosecute and defend all actions commenced by or against the decedent during his lifetime which are maintainable by or against the executor or administrator.

(RSMo 1939 97, A.L. 1955 p. 385 109)

Prior revisions: 1929 97; 1919 96; 1909 104



Compromise of debts due estate.

473.277. When it appears for the best interest of the estate, the executor or administrator, on order of the court, may effect a fair and reasonable compromise with any debtor or other obligor, or extend, renew or in any manner modify the terms of any obligation owing to the estate. If the executor or administrator holds a mortgage, pledge or other lien upon property of another person, he may accept, in lieu of foreclosure, a conveyance or transfer of the encumbered assets from the owner thereof in satisfaction of the indebtedness secured by the lien, if it appears for the best interest of the estate and if the court so orders. In the absence of prior authorization or subsequent approval of the court, no compromise binds the estate.

(L. 1955 p. 385 110)



Purchase at foreclosure of mortgage held by estate.

473.280. Whenever any note, bond, account, or other indebtedness belonging to the estate of any decedent is secured by mortgage, deed of trust, vendor's lien or other lien on any property, and the same is due and unpaid, the administrator or executor of the estate, under the order of the court, may purchase the property at the sale made under the mortgage, deed of trust or other lien, at a price not exceeding the amount due the estate on the note, bond, account or other indebtedness.

(RSMo 1939 95, A.L. 1955 p. 385 111)

Prior revisions: 1929 95; 1919 94; 1909 102



Title to real estate, how taken on such purchase--how administered.

473.283. 1. Where real estate is acquired under either section 473.277 or 473.280, the conveyance thereof shall be made to the executor or administrator who holds it in trust for the same persons, whether creditors, heirs or legatees, who would be entitled to the proceeds of the mortgage if the premises had been redeemed; but if it appears to the court that the property is not required for the payment of debts, legacies or family allowances, the court shall direct that the deed be made so as to effect a conveyance to the heirs or devisees of the decedent.

2. Any real estate acquired by an executor or administrator under section 473.277 or 473.280 constitutes assets in his hands, and shall be administered and accounted for as such, and may be leased or sold for the payment of debts in the same manner as any real estate of which the decedent died seized, but the sale thereof shall be made upon the order of the court and upon the petition filed as provided for by law in other cases.

(RSMo 1939 95, 96, A.L. 1955 p. 385 112)

Prior revisions: 1929 95, 96; 1919 94, 95; 1909 102, 103



Encumbered property to be redeemed, when.

473.287. 1. If any person dies leaving real or personal property encumbered by mortgage, deed of trust, pledge, or other lien, or owning any equity of redemption, the court, in accordance with the provisions of this subsection, may order the executor or administrator to redeem the same, in whole or in part, out of other personal assets of the estate, or may order the executor or administrator to sell other real estate or to mortgage or pledge real or personal property of the estate in his hands for the purpose of raising money for such redemption. If there is a will section 473.620 applies with respect to the application or use of the property for the redemption. When not prejudicial to the rights of creditors, the court may order redemption, if it finds:

(1) The property is not specifically devised by a will and redemption will promote the interests of the estate and upon payment of the secured debt the security will become an asset of the estate; or

(2) The will of the decedent, either by express provision or clear implication, shows that the decedent intended that the secured debt, in the event of his death, should be paid out of other assets of his estate and the security exonerated from the lien of the debt; or

(3) From the terms of the loan or mortgage agreement or from the circumstances surrounding the loan or mortgage transaction, that decedent, whether testate or intestate, intended that the debt, in the event of his death, should be paid out of the other assets of the estate and that the security should be thereby exonerated from the lien of the debt.

2. No redemption of property securing an obligation which is not due shall be compelled under this section without the consent of the holder of the secured debt unless a claim is filed thereon or the instrument creating the obligation permits redemption.

3. The court may order all of the right, title and interest of the deceased in the security to be sold for the same purposes and under the same conditions and procedure as is provided in this law for sales of other property of the decedent.

(L. 1955 p. 385 113, A.L. 1957 p. 829)

Prior revisions: 1929 139; 1919 138; 1909 147

CROSS REFERENCE:

Foreclosure of mortgages stayed by death of mortgagor, 443.300



Payment of debt of decedent secured by property of another--procedure.

473.290. When any indebtedness of a decedent is secured by mortgage, pledge or other lien on property which is owned by another or which, on the death of the decedent, becomes the exclusive property of another, but is not subject to administration, the indebtedness shall be allowed and paid as other claims against the estate of the decedent unless it appears to the court that (1) the mortgage, pledge or lien was given to secure payment of the purchase price of the encumbered property or of an obligation incurred in connection with the improvement of the property, or (2) the decedent did not actually receive a substantial consideration in the transaction in which the indebtedness arose, or (3) the decedent had exclusive ownership and control of the property during his lifetime and it appears from the loan or mortgage agreement or circumstances surrounding the transaction giving rise to the mortgage, pledge or lien that decedent intended that the security should be exhausted in case of his death before any payment thereon is made from his estate. If the holder of the secured debt does not institute proceedings for the allowance and payment thereof against the estate of the decedent within three months after publication of notice of letters, then before the time for filing of claims expires the owner of any property given as security for an indebtedness under circumstances described in this section may petition the court for such orders as are necessary for the protection of his rights and for the allowance of so much of the indebtedness against the estate as will be sufficient to exonerate the security. Notice of hearing on the petition shall be given to the executor or administrator and to the holder of the indebtedness. After hearing the court may make such order in the premises as may be necessary to preserve the rights of the parties, including, if proper, an allowance of the claim against the estate.

(L. 1955 p. 385 114, A.L. 1963 p. 655)



Disposition of valueless or encumbered property.

473.293. When any personal or real property is valueless, or is so encumbered, or is in such condition that it is of no benefit to the estate, the court may by order authorize the personal representative to make such disposition thereof as the court may find to be appropriate, including, where appropriate, the immediate distribution thereof to the heirs or legatees, the abandonment, giving away or destruction thereof, the relinquishment of all interest of the estate therein, or such other disposition as may be appropriate in the circumstances.

(L. 1955 p. 385 115, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Expenditures for preservation of property.

473.297. When any property of an estate is in such condition as to be in imminent danger of loss or destruction or loss in value, the executor or administrator may make such expenditures as are reasonably and prudently required to avoid such loss, destruction, or loss in value until he can obtain consideration of the matter by the court, and on approval of the court such expenditures shall be allowed as expenses of administration. The court may by order authorize such further expenditures to prevent loss, destruction or loss in value as the interest of the estate requires, and shall allow them as expenses of administration.

(RSMo 1939 102, 103, A.L. 1955 p. 385 116)

Prior revisions: 1929 102, 103; 1919 101, 102; 1909 109, 110



Continuation of business of decedent.

473.300. Upon a showing of advantage to the estate, the court may authorize the executor or administrator to continue any business of the decedent for the benefit of the estate; but if the decedent died testate and his estate is solvent, the order of the court is subject to the provisions of the will. The order may be with or without notice. If notice is not given to all interested persons before the order is made, the court shall promptly require the giving of notice to such interested persons as have not been previously notified to the effect that such order has been made and that they will have opportunity to show cause why it should not be set aside or modified. The order may provide:

(1) For the conduct of the business solely by the executor or administrator, or as a corporation to be formed by the executor or administrator, or for the participation as a partner by the executor or administrator in a business in which the decedent was a partner, subject to applicable provisions of law and the agreement of the other person or persons continuing such business as partners;

(2) The extent of the liability of the estate, or any part thereof, or of the executor or administrator, for obligations incurred in the continuation of the business;

(3) As to whether liabilities incurred in the conduct of the business are to be chargeable solely to the part of the estate set aside for use in the business or to the estate as a whole; and

(4) As to the period of time for which the business may be conducted, and such other conditions, restrictions, regulations and requirements as the court orders.

(L. 1955 p. 385 117)



Specific execution of contract of decedent--petition.

473.303. 1. If a decedent entered into a contract, specifically enforceable in equity, and did not execute the same in his lifetime, nor give power by will to execute the same, the other party, wishing specific execution of the contract, or the personal representative of the decedent, may present a verified petition to the court, setting forth the facts and stating that no part of the contract has been satisfied except as set forth, and praying that an order be made that the personal representative execute such contract specifically, by executing a deed for the same.

2. If the other party to the contract with the decedent is his personal representative, the personal representative may proceed against his copersonal representative, if any, in the same manner as prescribed by this law in other cases; but if there is no copersonal representative and he files the petition, the court shall appoint some suitable person as administrator ad litem who has the same powers and shall perform the same duties required of personal representative in such cases by this law.

(RSMo 1939 168, 169, 176, A.L. 1955 p. 385 118, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Prior revisions: 1929 169, 170, 177; 1919 168, 169, 176; 1909 177, 178, 185

Effective 1-1-81



Notice--hearing--intervention.

473.307. Upon the filing of a petition for specific execution of the contract, the court shall fix the time and place for hearing thereon. Notice of the filing of the petition and of the time and place of hearing thereon, together with a copy of the petition, shall be served on the executor or administrator twenty days before the date of the hearing. The court may order notice of the filing of the petition and of the time and place of hearing to be served by registered mail on the interested heirs or devisees whose addresses appear in the court's file and records in the estate. Any interested heir or devisee may appear and intervene, upon written application to intervene filed prior to the time of the hearing.

(RSMo 1939 170, A.L. 1955 p. 385 119, A.L. 1957 p. 829, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634)

Prior revisions: 1929 171; 1919 170; 1909 179

Effective 1-2-79



Specific execution of contract of decedent, court order--warranties--conveyance or lease under will.

473.310. 1. If the court, after hearing all parties, believes that specific execution of such contract ought to be made, it shall make an order that the personal representative execute and deliver an instrument of conveyance to the person entitled thereto upon performance of the contract.

2. The deed of conveyance shall refer in apt and appropriate terms to the order of court under which it is made, shall convey the property according to the order and shall be acknowledged by the personal representative. If the contract for a conveyance requires the giving of warranties, the deed to be given by the personal representative shall contain the warranties required. Such warranties shall be binding on the estate as though made by the decedent but shall not bind the personal representative personally.

3. If a personal representative has been given power by will to make a conveyance or lease, he may execute, in lieu of the foregoing procedure, and without order of the court, a conveyance or lease to the person entitled thereto upon performance of the contract.

4. The deed made under this section is as effectual as if it had been executed by the decedent.

(RSMo 1939 171, 172, 173, A.L. 1955 p. 385 120, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1983 H.B. 369)

Prior revisions: 1929 172, 173, 174; 1919 171, 172, 173; 1909 180, 181, 182



Action for specific performance--proceedings in probate division of circuit court.

473.313. A party entitled to specific execution of a contract for the conveyance of real estate shall proceed in the probate division of the circuit court under sections 473.303 and 473.307.

(L. 1955 p. 385 120, A.L. 1957 p. 829, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634)

Effective 1-2-79



Completion of contracts to purchase property--exercise of options.

473.317. 1. If any person dies having purchased real or personal property, and has not completed the payment therefor, nor provided for its payment by will, the court may order the completion of payment upon the same findings and conditions as are required by section 473.287 for the redemption of security for the decedent's debt. The court may, after notice to interested parties, order relinquishment, compromise or transfer of all such rights, title, and interest of the decedent in the property on such terms as the court finds to be for the benefit of the estate. This section shall not be construed to restrict any rights of the seller of the property.

2. If any person dies owning an option to purchase real or personal property, and it is to the advantage of the estate and will not be prejudicial to creditors or to specific devisees that such option be exercised, the court may by order authorize the exercise of the option by the executor or administrator and the payment by the executor or administrator of the purchase price.

(L. 1955 p. 385 121)



Interest may be sold, when.

473.320. If the court believes that, after payment of claims, there will not be sufficient assets to pay for the real or personal property referred to in section 473.317, it may order the executor or administrator to sell all the right, title and interest of the decedent therein, including all right of the decedent to any option to purchase the real or personal property.

(RSMo 1939 134, A.L. 1955 p. 385 122)

Prior revisions: 1929 135; 1919 134; 1909 143



Interest relinquished to vendor, when.

473.323. If the real or personal property referred to in section 473.317 has been purchased from any person, or if an option for its purchase has been obtained from any person, the court, if considered advantageous to the estate, may order the same relinquished to such person on the best terms that can be agreed upon.

(RSMo 1939 135, A.L. 1955 p. 385 123)

Prior revisions: 1929 136; 1919 135; 1909 144



Procedure in case of sale of school lands.

473.327. If any real estate referred to in subsection 1 of section 473.317 has been purchased from any officer authorized by law to sell school lands, the court may order the same relinquished; and in such cases the officers may accept the relinquishment and surrender the obligation of the decedent.

(RSMo 1939 136, A.L. 1955 p. 385 124)

Prior revisions: 1929 137; 1919 136; 1909 145



Conveyances, how made--procedure.

473.330. In all cases of relinquishment of the interest of a decedent in real estate under sections 473.323 and 473.327 and in all cases of the sale of the interest of a decedent in real estate under sections 473.287 and 473.320, the executor or administrator may make the relinquishments by deed or may convey to the purchaser all the right, title and interest the testator or intestate had in and to the real estate at the time of his death. Before any relinquishment or sale referred to in this section is ordered by the court, the executor or administrator shall proceed on petition and notice the same as is required by this law for proceedings to sell real estate to pay debts for other purposes.

(RSMo 1939 137, A.L. 1955 p. 385 125)

Prior revisions: 1929 138; 1919 137; 1909 146



Investment of liquid assets.

473.333. Except as restricted or otherwise provided by the will of the decedent, on or after August 28, 2009, the personal representative shall, without authorization or approval of the court, invest liquid assets of the estate, including funds received from the sale of other assets, other than funds needed to meet debts and expenses currently payable, in accordance with the provisions of the Missouri prudent investor act, sections 469.900 to 469.913, subject to the following exceptions:

(1) Investment of any part or all of the liquid assets:

(a) In direct obligation of or obligations unconditionally guaranteed as to principal and interest by the United States; or

(b) In interest-bearing accounts and time deposits, including time certificates of deposit, in financial institutions to the extent the account or deposits are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, shall constitute prudent investments;

(2) If the personal representative determines it appropriate to delegate investment and management functions to an agent as provided in section 469.909, the agent to whom the delegation is made shall acknowledge in a writing delivered to the personal representative that the agent is acting as an investment fiduciary on the account.

(RSMo 1939 104, A.L. 1955 p. 385 126, A.L. 1957 p. 829, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1982 S.B. 700 Revision, A.L. 1998 H.B. 1571, A.L. 2006 S.B. 892, A.L. 2009 H.B. 239)

Prior revisions: 1929 104; 1919 103; 1909 111

CROSS REFERENCE:

Multinational banks, securities and obligations of, investment in, when, 409.950



Bank deposits.

473.337. Whenever it is consistent with proper administration of the estate, the executor or administrator may, without an order of court, deposit, as a fiduciary, the funds of the estate in a banking institution in this state as a general deposit and either as a demand, time or savings deposit.

(L. 1955 p. 385 127, A.L. 1957 p. 829)



Discovery of assets, procedure for.

473.340. 1. Any personal representative, administrator, creditor, beneficiary or other person who claims an interest in property which is claimed to be an asset of an estate or which is claimed should be an asset of an estate may file a verified petition in the probate division of the circuit court in which said estate is pending seeking determination of the title, or right of possession thereto, or both. The petition shall describe the property, if known, shall allege the nature of the interest of the petitioner and that title or possession of the property, or both, are being adversely withheld or claimed. The court may order the joinder, as a party, of any person who may claim an interest in or who may have possession of any such property.

2. Service of summons, petition and answer thereto together with all subsequent proceedings shall be governed by the Missouri Rules of Civil Procedure. Any party may demand a jury trial.

3. Upon a trial of the issues, the court shall determine the persons who have an interest in said property together with the nature and extent of any such interest. The court shall direct the delivery or transfer of the title or possession, or both, of said property to the person or persons entitled thereto and may attach the person of any party refusing to make delivery as directed. If the party found to have adversely withheld the title or possession, or both, of said property has transferred or otherwise disposed of the same, the court shall render a money judgment for the value thereof with interest thereon from the date the property, or any interest therein, was adversely withheld. In addition to a judgment for title and possession, or either, or for the value thereof, the court may enter a judgment for all losses, expenses and damages sustained, if any, but not including attorney fees, if it finds that the property was wrongfully detained, transferred or otherwise disposed of.

4. If the court finds that a complete determination of the issues cannot be had without the presence of other parties, the court may order them to be brought in by an amended or supplemental petition. The court shall order the joinder of the personal representative of the estate if he is not named as a party.

(RSMo 1939 63, A.L. 1955 p. 385 128, A.L. 1973 S.B. 210, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634, A.L. 1982 S.B. 700 Revision, A.L. 1993 S.B. 88)

Prior revisions: 1929 63; 1919 62; 1909 70



Limitations on filing of claims--when claims barred.

473.360. 1. Except as provided in section 473.370, all claims against the estate of a deceased person, other than costs and expenses of administration, exempt property, family allowance, homestead allowance, claims of the United States and claims of any taxing authority within the United States, whether due or to become due, absolute or contingent, liquidated or unliquidated, founded on contract or otherwise, which are not filed in the probate division of the circuit court within six months after the date of the first published notice of letters testamentary or of administration or, if notice was actually mailed to, or served upon, such creditor, within two months after the date such notice was mailed, or served, whichever later occurs, or which are not paid by the personal representative, within six months after the first published notice of letters testamentary or of administration, are forever barred against the estate, the personal representative, the heirs, devisees and legatees of the decedent. No contingent claim based on any warranty made in connection with the conveyance of real estate is barred under this section. This six-month period does not extend any other applicable limitation periods.

2. Unless written notice of actions instituted or revived under section 473.363 or 473.367 is filed in the probate division within six months after the first published notice of letters, no recovery may be had in any such action on any judgment therein against the personal representative out of any assets being administered upon in the probate division or from any distributee or other person receiving the assets. Timely filing of the claim against the estate, under this section, within six months after the first published notice of letters, whether said claim is filed before or after the institution or revival of an action against the personal representative or the estate shall satisfy the requirement of written notice herein imposed.

3. Nothing in this section affects or prevents any action or proceeding to enforce any mortgage, pledge or other lien upon property of the estate; except that attachment, judgment, and execution liens shall be enforced as provided in this chapter and not otherwise.

(L. 1955 p. 385 139, A.L. 1957 p. 829, A.L. 1959 S.B. 305, A.L. 1969 p. 551, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1989 H.B. 145, A.L. 1993 S.B. 88, A.L. 1996 S.B. 494)

Effective 5-23-96

CROSS REFERENCES:

Limitations extended by death, survival, RSMo 516.240 516.250

Survival of causes of action, RSMo 431.130, 537.010, 537.020, 537.030



Suits pending at decedent's death deemed duly filed, when--personal representative to list pending actions--period of nonclaim not affected.

473.363. 1. Any action pending against any person at the time of his death, which, by law, survives against the personal representative, is considered a claim duly filed against his estate from the time substitution of the personal representative for the deceased defendant, or motion therefor, is made and written notice thereof is filed in the probate division.

2. Within ninety days after the appointment of a personal representative, he shall file with the probate division a verified statement of all actions, known to him, pending against his decedent at decedent's death. Within this ninety-day period, the personal representative of a decedent against whom any action, known to the personal representative was pending at the date of death, shall notify in writing all adverse parties to the action or their attorneys of record therein, if any, and the clerk of the court in which the action was pending, stating the date of decedent's death, the name of the court which granted letters testamentary or of administration, the name and address of the person or persons to whom the letters were granted, the number of the estate, and the date of the first publication of notice of granting the letters testamentary or of administration. Nothing herein contained, however, shall be construed as extending, suspending, or in any other way affecting the period of nonclaim provided by section 473.360. In the case of the corporate personal representative, the corporation shall be chargeable with the knowledge of the individual or individuals conducting the administration of the estate. In the case of multiple personal representatives, a personal representative having no knowledge of the pendency of a suit against the decedent shall not be chargeable with the knowledge of a copersonal representative. No personal representative shall have any liability for failing to give notice.

(RSMo 1939 183, A.L. 1955 p. 385 140, A.L. 1959 S.B. 305, A.L. 1967 p. 642, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Prior revisions: 1929 184; 1919 183; 1909 192

Effective 1-1-81



Actions commenced after decedent's death deemed filed, when.

473.367. Any action commenced against a personal representative, after death of the decedent, is considered a claim duly filed against the estate from the time of serving the original process on the personal representative, and the filing of a written notice in the probate division of the institution of such action within the time prescribed in section 473.360.

(RSMo 1939 184, A.L. 1955 p. 385 141, A.L. 1959 S.B. 305, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Prior revisions: 1929 185; 1919 184; 1909 193

Effective 1-1-81



Establishment of claim by judgment--judgment deemed filed, when.

473.370. 1. A person having a claim against an estate may establish the same by the judgment or decree of some court of record, in the ordinary course of proceeding, upon filing a copy of the judgment or decree in the probate division.

2. Except where notice of revival of an action or of institution of an action is filed as required by section 473.363 or 473.367, any judgment or decree is deemed filed within the meaning of section 473.360 as of the time a copy of the judgment or decree is filed in the probate division as required by this section.

(RSMo 1939 188, A.L. 1955 p. 385 142, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Prior revisions: 1929 189; 1919 188; 1909 197

Effective 1-1-81



Claims, form and verification--claim to be established by evidence.

473.380. 1. No claim other than for costs and expenses of administration shall constitute a claim against an estate unless it is in writing, stating the nature and amount thereof, if ascertainable, and is signed by the claimant, or by some person for him who has knowledge of the facts, stating that to the best of his knowledge and belief he has given credit to the estate for all payments and offsets to which it is entitled and that the balance claimed is justly due.

2. If a claim is founded on a written instrument, the original or a copy thereof with all endorsements shall be attached to the claim. The original instrument shall be exhibited to the personal representative, upon demand, unless it is lost or destroyed, in which case its loss or destruction shall be stated in the claim.

3. The statement of claim herein required shall not be received as any evidence of the claim but such claim shall be established by competent evidence before it is paid or adjusted.

4. Upon the filing of any claim, the probate clerk shall immediately send a copy of the claim to the personal representative or his attorney.

(RSMo 1939 192, 194, A.L. 1955 p. 385 145, A.L. 1959 S.B. 141, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1985 S.B. 35, et al.)

Prior revisions: 1929 193, 195; 1919 192, 194; 1909 201, 203



Claims not due, proceedings.

473.383. The court may allow any claim filed against an estate, which is payable at a future day, at the then present value thereof, or the court may order the executor or administrator to retain in his hands sufficient funds to satisfy the same upon maturity; or if the heirs, devisees, or legatees offer to give bond to a creditor for the payment of his claim according to the terms thereof, the court may order the bond to be given in satisfaction of such claim.

(L. 1955 p. 385 146)



Secured claims--surrender of security--payment.

473.387. When a creditor holds any security for his claim, the security shall be described in the claim. If the claim is secured by a mortgage, pledge, or other lien which has been recorded or filed for record, it is sufficient to describe the lien by date, and refer to the volume, page and place of recording or filing and the names of parties thereto. The claim shall be allowed in the same amount as if it were unsecured and the judgment allowing it shall describe the security. The creditor may surrender his security and be paid out of the assets of the estate. Nothing in this law shall be construed to compel the creditor to surrender his security until he receives payment of his debt in full or he is paid the value of the security. Payment of the claim shall be upon the basis of the full amount allowed if the creditor surrenders his security; otherwise payment shall be upon the basis of one of the following:

(1) If the creditor exhausts his security before receiving payment, then upon the basis of the full amount of the claim less the amount realized upon exhausting the security;

(2) If the creditor has not exhausted or does not have the right to exhaust his security, then upon the basis of the full amount of the claim less the value of the security determined by converting the same into money according to the terms of the agreement pursuant to which the security was delivered to the creditor, or by the creditor and personal representative by agreement, arbitration, compromise, or litigation.

(L. 1955 p. 385 147, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Contingent claims.

473.390. Contingent claims which cannot be allowed as absolute debts shall be filed nevertheless in the court and proved. If allowed as a contingent claim, the order of allowance shall state the nature of the contingency. If the claim becomes absolute before distribution of the estate, it shall be paid in the same manner as absolute claims of the same class. In all other cases the court may provide for the payment of contingent claims in any one of the following methods:

(1) The creditor and executor or administrator may determine, by agreement, arbitration or compromise, the value thereof, according to its probable present worth, and upon approval thereof by the court, it may be allowed and paid in the same manner as an absolute claim.

(2) The court may order the executor or administrator to make distribution of the estate but to retain in his hands sufficient funds to pay the claim if and when the same becomes absolute; but for this purpose the estate shall not be kept open longer than two years after distribution of the remainder of the estate has been made; and if the claim has not become absolute within that time, distribution shall be made to the distributees of the funds so retained, after paying any costs and expenses accruing during such period and the distributees are liable to the creditor to the extent of the estate received by them, if the contingent claim thereafter becomes absolute. When distribution is made to distributees, the court may require such distributees to give bond for the satisfaction of their liability to the contingent creditor.

(3) The court may order distribution of the estate as though the contingent claim did not exist, but the distributees are liable to the creditor to the extent of the estate received by them, if the contingent claim thereafter becomes absolute; and the court may require such distributees to give bond for the performance of their liability to the contingent creditor.

(L. 1955 p. 385 148)



Collection of contingent claims from distributees--limitations--contribution.

473.393. If a contingent claim has been filed and allowed against an estate and all the assets of the estate including the fund, if any, set apart for the payment thereof, have been distributed, and the claim thereafter becomes absolute, the creditor may recover thereon against those distributees whose distributive shares have been increased by reason of the fact that the amount of the claim as finally determined was not paid prior to final distribution, if an action therefor is commenced within six months after the claim becomes absolute. The distributees are jointly and severally liable, but no distributee is liable for an amount exceeding the amount of the estate or fund distributed to him. If more than one distributee is liable to the creditor, he shall make all distributees who can be reached by process parties to the action. By its judgment the court shall determine the amount of the liability of each of the defendants as between themselves, but if any is insolvent or unable to pay his proportion, or beyond the reach of process, the others, to the extent of their respective liabilities, nevertheless, are liable to the creditor for the whole amount of his debt. If a person liable for the debt fails to pay his just proportion to the creditor, he is liable to indemnify all who, by reason of the failure on his part, have paid more than their just proportion of the debt, the indemnity to be recovered in the same action or in separate actions.

(L. 1955 p. 385 149, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634)

Effective 1-2-79



Classification of claims and statutory allowances.

473.397. All claims and statutory allowances against the estate of a decedent shall be divided into the following classes:

(1) Costs;

(2) Expenses of administration;

(3) Exempt property, family and homestead allowances;

(4) Funeral expenses;

(5) Debts and taxes due the United States of America;

(6) Expenses of the last sickness, wages of servants, claims for medicine and medical attendance during the last sickness, and the reasonable cost of a tombstone;

(7) Debts and taxes due the state of Missouri, any county, or any political subdivision of the state of Missouri;

(8) Judgments rendered against the decedent in his lifetime and judgments rendered upon attachments levied upon property of decedent during his lifetime;

(9) All other claims not barred by section 473.360.

(RSMo 1939 181, A.L. 1955 p. 385 150, A.L. 1965 p. 635, A.L. 1969 S.B. 84, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Prior revisions: 1929 182; 1919 181; 1909 190

Effective 1-1-81

CROSS REFERENCE:

State claims paramount--personal liability on failure to pay, 430.330 to 430.350



Recovery of public assistance funds from recipient's estate, when authorized--procedure--exceptions.

473.398. 1. Upon the death of a person, who has been a participant of aid, assistance, care, services, or who has had moneys expended on his behalf by the department of health and senior services, department of social services, or the department of mental health, or by a county commission, the total amount paid to the decedent or expended upon his behalf after January 1, 1978, shall be a debt due the state or county, as the case may be, from the estate of the decedent. The debt shall be collected as provided by the probate code of Missouri, chapters 472, 473, 474 and 475.

2. Procedures for the allowance of such claims shall be in accordance with this chapter, and such claims shall be allowed as a claim of the seventh class under subdivision (7) of section 473.397.

3. Such claim shall not be filed or allowed if it is determined that:

(1) The cost of collection will exceed the amount of the claim;

(2) The collection of the claim will adversely affect the need of the surviving spouse or dependents of the decedent to reasonable care and support from the estate.

4. Claims consisting of moneys paid on the behalf of a participant as defined in 42 U.S.C. 1396 shall be allowed, except as provided in subsection 3 of this section, upon the showing by the claimant of proof of moneys expended. Such proof may include but is not limited to the following items which are deemed to be competent and substantial evidence of payment:

(1) Computerized records maintained by any governmental entity as described in subsection 1 of this section of a request for payment for services rendered to the participant; and

(2) The certified statement of the treasurer or his designee that the payment was made.

5. The provisions of this section shall not apply to any claims, adjustments or recoveries specifically prohibited by federal statutes or regulations duly promulgated thereunder. Further, the federal government shall receive from the amount recovered any portion to which it is entitled.

6. Before any probate estate may be closed under this chapter, with respect to a decedent who, at the time of death, was enrolled in MO HealthNet, the personal representative of the estate shall file with the clerk of the court exercising probate jurisdiction a release from the MO HealthNet division evidencing payment of all MO HealthNet benefits, premiums, or other such costs due from the estate under law, unless waived by the MO HealthNet division.

(L. 1977 H.B. 462 1 to 4, A.L. 1981 S.B. 117, A.L. 1985 S.B. 5, et al., A.L. 1995 S.B. 357, A.L. 2007 S.B. 577)



Definitions--obligation to repay assistance, claim against estate, when--defenses, setoff--exceptions.

473.399. 1. As used in this section, the following terms mean:

(1) "Assistance", funds expended by a state agency to or on behalf of a person in the form of aid, care, or services, except that for the purposes of this section, aid to families with dependent children shall not be considered assistance;

(2) "Obligor estate", the estate against which an obligation under this section arises;

(3) "Recipient", a person to whom or on whose behalf assistance is provided;

(4) "State agency", the department of social services, department of health and senior services and department of mental health of the state of Missouri.

2. For the purposes of this section, the providing of assistance shall create an obligation which may be recovered by filing a claim in the probate division of the circuit court against the decedent estate of the spouse of the deceased recipient upon such spouse's death as provided by the probate code of Missouri, chapters 472, 473, 474 and 475. The amount of the state debt shall be the full amount of assistance without interest provided to the recipient during the marriage of such recipient and spouse; provided that the liability of the obligor estate shall not exceed the value of the combined resources of the recipient and the spouse of the recipient on the date of death of the recipient.

3. The state agency providing the assistance may initiate a claim on the debt against the obligor estate.

4. The obligor estate may assert as a defense to the state agency's claim that more than two years prior to the providing of assistance, the recipient voluntarily abandoned the spouse.

5. An obligor estate shall have the right of setoff against the state debt for any amounts recovered by the state agency from the estate of the deceased recipient pursuant to section 473.398.

6. Claims shall not be filed under this section when collection of the state debt would be contrary to federal statutes for assistance programs in which federal funds are received.

(L. 1990 H.B. 1725 1)

(2008) Section's definition of estate does not include all non-probate transfers and thus is insufficiently broad to allow recovery by State of Medicaid benefits from estate of recipient's surviving spouse. In re Estate of Shuh, 248 S.W.3d 82 (Mo.App.E.D.).

(2008) Section authorizing State to receive reimbursement from Medicaid recipient's estate after recipient's death or from estate of recipient's spouse after death of spouse is preempted by federal statute. In re Estate of Bruce, 260 S.W.3d 398 (Mo.App.W.D.).



Allowance of claims--court's duties--allowance by personal representative.

473.403. 1. Except as provided in subsections 2 and 3 hereof, no claimant is entitled to payment unless his claim has been duly filed and allowed by the court. Upon the adjudication of any claim the court shall allow it in whole or in part, or disallow it. The order allowing the claim has the effect of a judgment and bears interest at the legal rate, unless the claim provides for a different rate in which case the judgment shall be rendered accordingly.

2. Except in case of the personal representative's own claim, any claim may be paid by the personal representative, without allowance thereof by the court, and credit may be had therefor in his settlement, provided the same is either paid or filed within the time prescribed by section 473.360; but, if written exceptions thereto are duly filed by any interested party within the time allowed for filing exceptions to the final settlement of the personal representative, hearing by the court shall be had thereon. On such hearing the burden is on the personal representative to prove that the estate was liable on the claim for the amount so paid. If the court adjudges that the estate was not liable for any part of the amount paid, the exceptions to such extent shall be sustained.

3. Claims for expenses of administration may be allowed upon application of the claimant or of the personal representative, or may be allowed in the discretion of the court at any settlement regardless of whether or not they have been paid by the personal representative.

(L. 1955 p. 385 152, A.L. 1969 p. 553, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Defenses against claims.

473.407. Any executor or administrator may assert the same offsets and other defenses against any suit or other proceeding instituted against the estate of his testator or intestate which he might have made in his lifetime.

(RSMo 1939 191, A.L. 1955 p. 385 153)

Prior revisions: 1929 192; 1919 191; 1909 200



Offsets or counterclaims--personal representative to list--how asserted--procedure--judgment.

473.410. The personal representative shall file a statement of all offsets or counterclaims against the creditor not less than twenty days prior to the date of hearing. The court may permit the statement to be filed in less than twenty days prior to the date of the hearing for good cause. Upon hearing of the claim and offsets or counterclaims the court shall determine the amount due by and against the estate and render judgment in favor of or against the estate for the net amount. If a judgment is rendered against a claimant for any net amount, execution may issue in the same manner as on judgments in civil cases. An offset may or may not diminish or defeat the recovery sought by the opposing party. Such offset may claim relief exceeding in amount or different in kind from that sought in the claim of the creditor.

(L. 1955 p. 385 154, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Hearing and disposition of claims--notice.

473.413. Each court may provide by rule for the time and notice of hearing and disposition of claims filed therein or may set any individual claim or claims for hearing irrespective of rule. Except when ordered by the court for cause or upon agreement of the parties the time for hearing of any claim shall not be fixed at any time before the expiration of twenty days after notice thereof has been served on the personal representative.

(L. 1955 p. 385 155, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Claim of personal representative--how established--procedure--fee.

473.423. A personal representative may establish a claim against the estate by proceeding against his corepresentative in the manner prescribed for other persons; but if there is no corepresentative, he shall file his claim and other papers, and, unless the persons whose interests would be adversely affected consent thereto in writing, the court shall appoint some suitable person as administrator ad litem to appear and manage the defense. The fee allowed to the administrator ad litem shall be charged against the claimant as costs unless the claimant can show that the claim arose prior to decedent's death or, that by advancing funds on behalf of the estate, the estate was benefitted thereby, in which event the fee allowed the administrator ad litem shall be charged as costs against the estate and paid as an expense of administration.

(RSMo 1939 202, A.L. 1955 p. 385 158, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Prior revisions: 1929 203; 1919 202; 1909 211

Effective 1-1-81



Compromise of claims against estate.

473.427. When a claim against the estate has been filed or suit thereon is pending, the creditor and personal representative, if it appears for the best interest of the estate, may compromise the claim, whether due or not due, absolute or contingent, liquidated or unliquidated.

(L. 1955 p. 385 159, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Payments of claims and statutory allowances in order of classification--proportional payment--priority.

473.430. All claims and statutory allowances against an estate shall be paid by the personal representative, as far as he has assets, in the order specified in section 473.397; and no claim or statutory allowance of one class shall be paid until all previous classes are satisfied or it appears that there are sufficient assets to satisfy all previous classes. If there are not sufficient assets to pay the whole of any one class, claims shall be paid in proportion to their amounts. Exempt property, family allowance and homestead allowance have priority for payment, in the order listed, among themselves.

(RSMo 1939 207, A.L. 1955 p. 385 160, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Prior revisions: 1929 208; 1919 207; 1909 216

Effective 1-1-81



Payment of claims not required prior to six months after first publication--payments after six months--insufficient funds--payment with consent of all parties--no just claim to be barred, when.

473.433. 1. Prior to the expiration of six months after the date of the first publication of letters, no personal representative shall be compelled to pay any claim presented to him or filed with the court; provided, however, that subsequent to the expiration of the time specified in section 473.360, no personal representative shall pay any claim except costs and expenses of administration, unless, within the time specified in sections 473.360, 473.363, and 473.367, said claim has either been filed with the court or acknowledged by the personal representative in writing to be a just claim.

2. Upon the expiration of six months after the date of first publication of letters, or when it appears that there are sufficient assets to pay all claims whether or not theretofore allowed, the personal representative shall proceed to pay all claims to which he has consented or which have been allowed by final judgment.

3. If it appears at any time that the estate is or may be insolvent, that there are insufficient funds on hand, or that there is other good and sufficient cause, the personal representative may report that fact to the court and apply for any order that he deems necessary in connection therewith.

4. Notwithstanding sections 473.360, 473.363, and 473.367, a personal representative may pay any claim at any time with the consent of all interested parties.

5. No claim filed with the court or acknowledged by the personal representative in writing to be a just claim, within the time specified in sections 473.360, 473.363 and 473.367, shall be barred on the basis of the claim not having been served upon the personal representative within the time specified in sections 473.360, 473.363, and 473.367.

(L. 1955 p. 385 161, A.L. 1969 p. 553, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1982 S.B. 700 Revision, A.L. 1996 S.B. 494)

Effective 5-23-96



Extension or renewal of encumbrances of assets.

473.437. When any assets of the estate are encumbered by mortgage, pledge or other lien, the personal representative may renew or extend any obligation secured by the encumbrance or convey or transfer the assets to the creditor in satisfaction of his lien, in whole or in part, pursuant to agreement with the holder of the encumbrance, whether or not the holder of the encumbrance has filed a claim, if it appears to be for the best interest of the estate.

(L. 1955 p. 385 162, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Enforcement of judgment, attachment or execution liens which attached prior to decedent's death.

473.440. When any real or personal property of an estate is bound by the lien of any judgment, attachment or execution, which attached prior to the death of decedent, the personal representative, when the best interests of the estate require, may obtain the redemption thereof, except that, if the estate is insolvent, the property subject to the lien shall be sold in the manner provided by law for the sale of property for the payment of obligations of the estate. The proceeds of the sale shall be used first to satisfy and pay the judgment or execution without regard to the classification thereof, except that claims in classes one through seven of section 473.397 have precedence over such liens, and the residue, if any, shall be administered as other assets. If there is more than one judgment, attachment or execution lien, and the estate is insufficient to pay all of them, they shall be paid according to their priority, or, if they are of equal priority, the proceeds shall be applied to the several liens in proportion to their respective amounts.

(L. 1955 p. 385 163, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81

CROSS REFERENCES:

Attached property of decedent to be sold only under administration proceedings, 521.450, 521.460

Executions not to issue against executor or administrator, when, 513.075

Executors or administrators not to be summoned as garnishees, when, 525.030



Proceedings where real estate has been sold under junior judgment.

473.443. 1. If real estate, being or having been bound by the liens of several judgments or attachments, has been sold under a junior judgment, the personal representative shall file a petition alleging the fact of the sale, the name of the plaintiff in the junior judgment, the name of the purchaser, the dates and amounts of the several judgments and attachments, and the names of the persons in whose favor the several judgments were rendered, or such attachments are prosecuted.

2. The court thereupon shall cause a copy of the petition to be served, in the manner provided by statute or civil rule, upon the plaintiff in the judgment under which the real estate was sold and the purchaser thereof, together with an order that unless good cause to the contrary is shown, at a date fixed by the court, an order will be made for the sale of the whole or so much of the real estate as is sufficient to pay the prior judgments or attachments.

3. The purchaser of the real estate has the privilege of paying the prior judgments at any time within three months after the date of the service of the petition, or, in case of attachments, within the time specified in section 473.360.

4. If the purchaser of the real estate under the junior judgment fails to pay the prior judgment, or judgment upon prior attachments, or both, within the time prescribed in subsection 3 above, the real estate shall be sold in the manner provided by law for the sale of real estate of decedents free from the encumbrance of the title derived from the sale under the junior judgment, and the proceeds of the sale shall be disposed of according to law.

(RSMo 1939 151, A.L. 1955 p. 385 164, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Prior revisions: 1929 152; 1919 151; 1909 160

Effective 1-1-81



Limitations on filing claims--when claims barred.

473.444. 1. Unless otherwise barred by law, all claims against the estate of a deceased person, other than costs and expenses of administration, exempt property, family allowance, homestead allowance, claims of the United States and claims of any taxing authority within the United States, whether due or to become due, absolute or contingent, liquidated or unliquidated, founded on contract or otherwise, which are not filed in the probate division, or are not paid by the personal representative, shall become unenforceable and shall be forever barred against the estate, the personal representative, the heirs, devisees and legatees of the decedent one year following the date of the decedent's death, whether or not administration of the decedent's estate is had or commenced within such one-year period and whether or not during such period a claimant has been given any notice, actual or constructive, of the decedent's death or of the need to file a claim in any court. No contingent claim based on any warranty made in connection with the conveyance of real estate is barred under this section.

2. Nothing in this section affects or prevents any action or proceeding to enforce any mortgage, pledge or other lien upon property of the estate; except that attachment, judgment, and execution liens shall be enforced as provided in this law and not otherwise.

(L. 1989 H.B. 145)

Effective 7-13-89

(2004) Department of Social Services is a "taxing authority" exempt from one-year limit for filing reimbursement claims against a decedent's estate. In re Cahill, 131 S.W.3d 859 (Mo.App.S.D.).

(2010) Section is self-executing and does not require sufficient state involvement to implicate due process protections. State ex rel. Houska v. Dickhaner, 323 S.W.3d 29 (Mo.banc).



Sale of property under power in will.

473.457. 1. The sale and conveyance of property under a will shall be made by the acting executor or administrator with the will annexed, if no other person is appointed by the will for that purpose, or if such person fails or refuses to act.

2. Whenever power to sell or otherwise deal with property under a will, by the terms thereof, is personal to the executor therein designated, the court may direct the exercise thereof by a successor executor or administrator or by some other person. The court has full power to supervise the exercise of such powers and to make such orders as are necessary to effectuate the will of testator.

3. When power to sell, mortgage, lease or exchange property of the estate has been given to any executor under the terms of any will, the executor may proceed under such power, or under the provisions of this law, as he may determine.

(RSMo 1939 132, A.L. 1955 p. 385 168)

Prior revisions: 1929 133; 1919 132; 1909 141



Purposes for which property may be sold, mortgaged, leased or exchanged.

473.460. 1. Real or personal property belonging to an estate may be sold, mortgaged, leased or exchanged under court order for any of the following purposes:

(1) For the payment of claims allowable against the estate;

(2) For the payment of any allowance made to the surviving spouse and minor children of a decedent;

(3) For the payment of any legacy given by the will of the decedent;

(4) For the payment of expenses of administration including court costs;

(5) For the payment of any gift, estate, inheritance or transfer taxes assessed upon the transfer of the estate or due from the decedent or his estate;

(6) For any other purpose in the best interests of the estate; or if it would be burdensome to the heirs or devisees to distribute the personal property or the real estate in kind.

2. Real and personal property may be sold or mortgaged under order of the court when necessary for the purpose of making distribution of the estate or any part thereof.

3. Personal property of the estate shall be exhausted before real estate is ordered sold for the payment of the obligations of the estate unless the court otherwise orders.

(L. 1955 p. 385 169, A.L. 1957 p. 829, A.L. 1965 p. 636, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81

CROSS REFERENCES:

Conveyances to urban redevelopment corporation, when, 353.120

Homestead allowance, property not to be sold, when, 474.290



No known heirs, property to be sold.

473.463. When there are no known heirs or legal representatives of heirs, the personal representative shall sell all the real and personal estate of the decedent as to which he died intestate six months after administration is granted, unless the court otherwise orders.

(RSMo 1939 115, A.L. 1955 p. 385 170, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Prior revisions: 1929 116; 1919 115; 1909 125

Effective 1-1-81



Reservation of property under direction of will--specific devises reserved.

473.467. 1. If any testator directs that his estate or any specific part or parts thereof be not sold, the same shall be reserved unless such sale is necessary for the payment of claims or allowances to surviving spouse or minor children.

2. Specific devises shall not be sold in any case unless necessary in accordance with section 473.620.

(RSMo 1939 112, 114, A.L. 1955 p. 385 171)

Prior revisions: 1929 113, 115; 1919 112, 114; 1909 122, 124



Heirs may give bond and prevent sale.

473.470. An order prohibiting the sale of property for the payment of obligations of the estate may be granted if any of the persons interested in the estate executes and files in the court a bond in such sum and with such sureties as the court approves, conditioned to pay all obligations of the estate to the extent that the other property of the estate is insufficient therefor, within such time as the court directs. An action may be maintained on such bond by the executor or administrator.

(L. 1955 p. 385 172)



Terms of sale.

473.473. In all sales of real or personal property the court may authorize credit to be given by the executor or administrator for the payment of such portion of the purchase price and for such periods of time, upon such rates of interest, with such security, and upon such other conditions as the court finds to be in the interests of the estate.

(L. 1955 p. 385 173, A.L. 1957 p. 829)



Executor or administrator not to purchase, exception.

473.477. No executor or administrator shall purchase any property belonging to the estate which is sold either at public or private sale, unless written consent thereto is filed by the distributees.

(RSMo 1939 161, A.L. 1955 p. 385 174)

Prior revisions: 1929 162; 1919 161; 1909 170



Validity of proceedings.

473.480. No proceedings for sale, mortgage, lease, exchange or conveyance by an executor or administrator of property belonging to the estate shall be subject to collateral attack on account of any irregularity in the proceedings if the court which ordered the same had jurisdiction of the estate.

(L. 1955 p. 385 175)



Sales of perishable property.

473.483. Every executor or administrator may sell at private or public sale all goods and chattels of the decedent that are liable to perish, be consumed or rendered worse by the keeping upon obtaining order of the court so to do. Approval of the court of a sale without prior order validates the sale.

(RSMo 1939 111, A.L. 1955 p. 385 176)

Prior revisions: 1929 112; 1919 111; 1909 121



Sale, mortgage or lease of personal property.

473.487. An executor or administrator may file a petition to sell, mortgage or lease any personal property belonging to the estate. The petition shall set forth the reasons for the application and describe the property involved. The petition may be heard with or without notice as the court directs. Notice of the hearing, if required, shall state briefly the nature of the application and shall be given as provided in section 472.100. The court may order the sale, mortgage or lease of the property described or any part thereof, on the most advantageous terms obtainable. No report or confirmation of the transaction is necessary unless required by the court; but no privately negotiated sale, mortgage or lease made under this section is valid unless prior authorization or subsequent approval of the court is secured.

(L. 1955 p. 385 177, A.L. 1957 p. 829)



Sale of real estate on court's motion, when.

473.490. 1. If, upon any settlement of the executor or administrator, it appears that the personal property of an estate is not sufficient for the payment of claims, legacies or allowances to the surviving spouse or unmarried minor children, the court may require a hearing to determine if real property of the estate should be sold, mortgaged or leased for that purpose.

2. Notice of the hearing, stating the time and nature thereof, shall be given by the clerk in the manner and to the persons as provided in subsection 2 of section 473.493.

3. Upon hearing the matter, and upon the adduction of satisfactory proof, the court may order the sale, mortgage or lease of such real property of the estate as the circumstances may require, and the same proceedings under this law shall thereafter be had in relation to the sale, mortgage or lease as if the same had been instituted on petition of the executor or administrator, or a creditor or other interested person.

(RSMo 1939 165, A.L. 1955 p. 385 178, A.L. 1957 p. 829)

Prior revisions: 1929 166; 1919 165; 1909 174



Petition to sell, mortgage or lease real estate--notice--order.

473.493. 1. An executor or administrator may file a petition to sell, mortgage or lease any real property belonging to the estate. The petition shall set forth the reason for the application and describe the property involved. It may apply for different authority as to separate parts of the property; or it may apply in the alternative for authority to sell, mortgage or lease. If the property is bound by the lien of a judgment or attachment, that fact shall be stated in the petition together with detailed information as to the date, amount and holder of the lien. Upon the filing of the petition, the court shall fix the time and place for the hearing thereof.

2. Notice of the hearing shall state briefly the nature of the application and shall be given to heirs and devisees whose names and addresses appear in the files or records of the case in the probate division of the circuit court and who are interested persons and to such other persons as the court directs. The notice shall be given by ordinary mail or by publication or both as ordered by the court. Publication, if any, shall be at least once each week for four consecutive weeks in accordance with section 472.100. Where service by publication is ordered, the hearing shall be held at the time specified in the notice which shall not be before the thirtieth day or later than the forty-second day after the date of the first insertion of the publication and, in other cases, the hearing shall be had at the time specified in the notice. For good cause shown on the date specified, or on a date to which the hearing is duly continued, the court may continue the hearing to a later date without further notice.

3. At the hearing and upon satisfactory proofs, the court may order the sale, mortgage or lease of the property described or any part thereof. When a claim secured by a mortgage on real property, under the provisions of this law, is payable at the time of distribution of the estate or prior thereto, the court with the consent of the mortgagee may, nevertheless, order the sale of the real property subject to the mortgage, but such consent releases the estate should a deficiency later appear.

(L. 1955 p. 385 179, A.L. 1957 p. 829)



Creditor or other person may file petition, when.

473.497. If the executor or administrator does not make such application, a creditor or other person interested in the estate may file a like petition, giving twenty days' notice to the executor or administrator. On the filing of the petition the court may order the executor or administrator to furnish such information and records as the court deems necessary. On the petition the court shall proceed in the same manner as provided in section 473.493.

(RSMo 1939 145, A.L. 1955 p. 385 180)

Prior revisions: 1929 146; 1919 145; 1909 154



Order for sale, mortgage or lease of property, content--duration--reappraisal, when.

473.500. The order shall describe the property to be sold, mortgaged or leased and may designate the sequence in which the several parcels shall be sold, mortgaged or leased. An order for sale shall direct whether the property shall be sold at private sale or public auction. If real property is to be sold at private sale it shall direct that the same shall not be sold for less than three-fourths of the appraised value; or if real property is to be leased, it shall direct that the same shall not be leased for less than the appraised rental value. If real property is to be mortgaged, it shall fix the maximum amount of principal, the maximum rate of interest, the earliest and latest date of maturity, and shall direct the purpose for which the proceeds shall be used. An order for sale, mortgage or lease shall remain in force until terminated by the court. The court may, if it finds that there is probable cause to believe that the value of the property has changed, order a reappraisal thereof.

(L. 1955 p. 385 181, A.L. 1959 S.B. 141, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Notice of public sale of real estate.

473.507. In all public sales of real estate made under this law, the executor or administrator shall cause a notice containing a particular description of the real estate to be sold and the street address or approximate direction and distance from any city or town, and popular name thereof, if any, stating the time, place and terms of sale, to be published once a week for four consecutive weeks prior to the sale in some newspaper. The name of the estate shall be printed in capital letters in the notice. The notice shall be published in accordance with section 472.100 except that the newspaper in which publication is made must be published in the county in which the land is situated, or if there is none, in an adjoining county. Omission of or error in the street address or approximate direction or distance from any city or town or popular name, or any of them, shall not affect the validity of the notice.

(RSMo 1939 159, A.L. 1955 p. 385 183)

Prior revisions: 1929 160; 1919 159; 1909 168



Public sale of real estate, where made, adjournment.

473.510. 1. All public sales of real estate, made by order of the court, shall be made at the courthouse door of the county in which the real estate is situated, or at such other place in the county as may be fixed by the court order, at the time specified in the notice, and shall be conducted openly by auction.

2. The executor or administrator may adjourn the sale from time to time, but not for longer than three months in all. Every adjournment shall be announced publicly at the time and place fixed for the sale.

(RSMo 1939 160, A.L. 1955 p. 385 184)

Prior revisions: 1929 161; 1919 160; 1909 169



Report of sale--objections--approval.

473.513. 1. Within ten days after making a sale, mortgage or lease of real estate, the executor or administrator shall make a full report of his proceedings, with the certificate of appraisement if a new appraisement is required by the court, and a copy of the advertisement, if a public sale, which report shall be verified by affidavit that he did not, directly or indirectly, purchase the real estate or any part thereof, or any interest therein, and that he is not interested in the property sold except as stated in the report. If the written consent of distributees to the purchase by the executor or administrator is filed as provided by section 473.477 the affidavit is not required. The report of sale shall remain on file ten days before being acted upon by the court.

2. A person interested in the estate desiring to object to confirmation may file objections in writing, setting forth the reasons therefor.

3. The court shall examine the report and if satisfied that the sale, mortgage or lease has been at the price and terms most advantageous to the estate and in all respects made in conformity with law and ought to be confirmed, shall approve the same and order the executor or administrator to make a deed, mortgage, lease or other proper instruments to the person entitled thereto.

(RSMo 1939 162, A.L. 1955 p. 385 185)

Prior revisions: 1929 163; 1919 162; 1909 171



New sale ordered, when.

473.517. If the report and proceedings of the executor or administrator are not approved by the court, his proceedings shall be void. When from any cause no sale, mortgage or lease is made, the court with or without further notice to heirs or devisees, may order a new sale, mortgage or lease upon which the same proceedings shall be had as upon the original order or, unless the original order is terminated as provided in section 473.500, further proceedings may be had on the original order itself.

(RSMo 1939 163, A.L. 1955 p. 385 186)

Prior revisions: 1929 164; 1919 163; 1909 172



Conveyance executed, contents--effect.

473.520. 1. Upon approval of a sale, mortgage or lease in accordance with section 473.513, the executor or administrator shall execute, acknowledge and deliver a conveyance to the grantee or mortgagee or a lease to the lessee according to the order of approval.

2. In case of a sale or mortgage, the conveyance shall refer in apt and appropriate terms to the order of sale or mortgage and the court by which it was made, the certificate of appraisement, the advertisement, the time and place of sale, the report of the proceedings and order of approval thereof by the court, and the consideration and conveying or mortgaging to the grantee or mortgagee all the right, title and interest which the decedent had in the same.

3. In case of a lease, the lease shall contain like information and shall grant to the lessee possession and use of all the right, title and interest which decedent had in the demised premises.

4. Such deed, mortgage or lease shall convey to the grantee, or mortgagee, or lessee all the right, title and interest which the decedent had in such real estate at the time of his death, in accordance with its terms, and be evidence of the facts therein recited.

(RSMo 1939 164, A.L. 1955 p. 385 187)

Prior revisions: 1929 165; 1919 164; 1909 173



Execution of conveyance or lease where personal representative resigns, dies or has letter revoked.

473.523. When a personal representative resigns or dies, or his letters are revoked after the sale, exchange, mortgage or lease of real estate, and before executing a conveyance or lease therefor, the purchaser, mortgagee, or lessee, his heirs, assigns or grantees may petition the court, stating the facts. If he satisfies the court that the purchase money was paid, the court shall order the personal representative then acting, or, if after final settlement, the sheriff of the county to execute and acknowledge to the purchaser, mortgagee or lessee, his heirs, assigns or grantees an appropriate conveyance or lease, referring to the petition and order of court, with such other recitals as provided by section 473.520. Such conveyance or lease shall be executed accordingly and has the same effect to all intents and purposes as if made by the personal representative who made the sale, exchange, mortgage or lease of the real estate.

(RSMo 1939 166, A.L. 1955 p. 385 188, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Prior revisions: 1929 167; 1919 166; 1909 175

Effective 1-1-81



Taxes not liens in hands of transferee.

473.527. The lien of the state for estate taxes shall not extend to any interest acquired by a purchaser, mortgagee, or lessee through any transfer made by an executor or administrator under a power contained in a will or under order of the court.

(L. 1955 p. 385 189)



Brokers', abstracting, and auctioneers' fees.

473.530. In connection with the sale, mortgage, lease or exchange of property, the court may authorize the executor or administrator to pay, out of the proceeds realized therefrom or out of the estate, the customary and reasonable auctioneers', brokers' and real estate sales fees or commissions, and any necessary expenses for abstracting, title insurance, survey, revenue stamps and other necessary costs and expenses in connection therewith.

(L. 1955 p. 385 190, A.L. 1987 H.B. 356)



Platting of real estate.

473.533. Whenever in the opinion of the court, it is to the interest of the estate to divide any lands belonging to the estate into village or town lots, the court, upon application of the executor or administrator, may make an order causing the same to be done; and thereupon the executor or administrator shall cause a plat of the lands so ordered to be divided to be made according to the provisions of the statute concerning the plats of towns and villages, and submit the same to the court for its approval. Upon approval of the plat by the court, a copy of the order approving the same, properly certified, shall be endorsed thereon; and the plat, so endorsed, shall be deposited and recorded as authorized by law in other cases.

(RSMo 1939 177, A.L. 1955 p. 385 191)

Prior revisions: 1929 178; 1919 177; 1909 186



Exchange of property.

473.537. Whenever it appears upon the petition of the executor or administrator or of any person interested in the estate to be to the best interests of the estate to exchange any real or personal property of the estate for other property, the court may authorize the exchange upon such terms and conditions as it may prescribe, which may include the payment or receipt of part cash by the executor or administrator. If personal property of the estate is to be exchanged, the proceedings required for the sale of such property shall apply so far as may be; if real property of the estate is to be exchanged, the procedure for the sale of such property shall apply so far as may be.

(L. 1955 p. 385 192)



Settlements required, when.

473.540. 1. Every personal representative shall file in the court a statement of his accounts with proper vouchers, for settlement at the following times, unless the court otherwise orders:

(1) Annually on the anniversary date of the date of letters until the administration is completed;

(2) At any other time when directed by the court either on its own motion or on application of any interested person.

2. Every personal representative shall file final settlement of his estate at the following times:

(1) On the first court day after the expiration of six months and ten days after the date of the first publication of notice of letters granted or as soon thereafter as administration is completed;

(2) Within ten days after revocation of his letters unless the court otherwise orders;

(3) Upon his application to resign and before his resignation is accepted.

3. A personal representative may in case of continuance of the final settlement pursuant to order of the court, file the final settlement at any time before the date to which it was continued. The court may, in its discretion, for good cause shown, extend the time for filing any intermediate or final settlement, or permit the late filing thereof, without penalty.

(RSMo 1939 213, A.L. 1955 p. 385 193, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Prior revisions: 1929 214; 1919 213; 1909 222

Effective 1-1-81

CROSS REFERENCE:

Partition sale proceeds, distribution before settlement prohibited, 528.140



Settlements, contents--vouchers for disbursement--evidence, checks and drafts.

473.543. 1. Each settlement filed by a personal representative shall state the period for which it is made and, among other things, shall contain a just and true account of all moneys collected by such personal representative, the date when collected, from whom collected and on what account collected, whether on claims charged in the inventory or for property sold or otherwise; and it shall show the exact amount of principal and interest collected on each claim, and also the amount and date of each expenditure or distribution, and to whom and for what paid. Such settlement shall also show what interest has been obtained by the personal representative upon any funds in his or her hands, and when obtained, on what amounts, for what time and at what rate percent. Each expenditure of more than seventy-five dollars for which a personal representative claims credit in any settlement shall be supported by vouchers executed by the person to whom the disbursement was made or other documentation, such as an electronic copy of a check or a bank statement, which establishes to the court's satisfaction that the payment claimed in the settlement was actually made to the payee to whom it is claimed to have been made. The court has discretion to require documentation for expenditures of less than seventy-five dollars. Every settlement shall be signed by the personal representative.

2. When the law, local probate rule or practice requires the production of original cancelled checks or drafts as part of any interim or final settlements of any kind by personal representatives, conservators, or other persons, such information may be retained and reproduced in a form permitted under section 362.413; and, provided such information meets the requirements of section 362.413, no court may require the production of the original checks and drafts.

(RSMo 1939 213, A.L. 1955 p. 385 194, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1996 S.B. 494, A.L. 1998 S.B. 792, A.L. 2009 H.B. 273)

Prior revisions: 1929 214; 1919 213; 1909 222



Interest to be accounted for.

473.550. All interest received by executors or administrators on debts due to the decedent are assets in their hands. They shall not use the money of the decedent for their own private purposes. If they do so, they shall be liable to the estate for interest and any loss of principal. The deposit pursuant to section 473.337 of funds of the estate in the banking department of a banking institution which is the sole or joint executor or administrator may, however, be made in all cases in which such deposit would have been proper if such banking institution were not an executor or administrator of the estate. The court, at each settlement, shall exercise an equitable control in making executors and administrators account for interest, and for that purpose may take testimony or examine the executor or administrator on oath.

(RSMo 1939 222, 223, A.L. 1955 p. 385 196, A.L. 1971 S.B. 163)

Prior revisions: 1929 223, 224; 1919 222, 223; 1909 231, 232



Settlement docket, contents.

473.553. The clerk of the court shall keep a docket and enter therein a list of all personal representatives, the date of their letters and the time at which they are required to file their settlements.

(RSMo 1939 214, A.L. 1955 p. 385 197, A.L. 1957 p. 829, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Prior revisions: 1929 215; 1919 214; 1909 223

Effective 1-1-81



Notice of time for settlement.

473.557. The clerk shall notify each executor or administrator by ordinary mail of the day on which each of his settlements is required to be filed at least forty days before such date. Failure to receive the notice herein required shall not excuse any executor or administrator from making settlement at the time required by law.

(L. 1955 p. 385 198)



Failure to file settlement, citation.

473.560. If any executor or administrator fails to appear and file settlement on the day for which his settlement is docketed, the court shall continue the settlement to some future day and issue a citation to the executor or administrator requiring him to file settlement on the day to which the settlement is continued or show good cause, if any he has, why his settlement has not been filed and why his letters should not be revoked. The citation shall be served in the manner prescribed by the court in accordance with section 472.100.

(RSMo 1939 216, A.L. 1955 p. 385 199)

Prior revisions: 1929 217; 1919 216; 1909 225



Settlement after citation, penalty.

473.563. If, after service of the citation, the executor or administrator appears and files his settlement he shall be fined for his failure to file settlement at the proper time in a sum not exceeding one hundred dollars, unless he satisfies the court that it was impracticable for him to file settlement. All fines shall be paid into the county treasury and the executor or administrator and his sureties are liable for the same upon their bonds.

(RSMo 1939 218, A.L. 1955 p. 385 200)

Prior revisions: 1929 219; 1919 218; 1909 227



Failure to settle after citation, letters revoked.

473.567. If the executor or administrator fails to appear as required by the citation or, appearing, fails or refuses to file settlement, or to show cause why settlement should be continued, the court, in addition to the fine provided for in section 473.563, may revoke his letters and issue attachments or other process to compel final settlement, directed to any county in the state. In all such cases the delinquent shall pay costs.

(RSMo 1939 219, A.L. 1955 p. 385 201)

Prior revisions: 1929 220; 1919 219; 1909 228



Settlement, payment of claims--apportionment where assets insufficient.

473.570. After every settlement, when the best interests of the estate require it, on application of any interested person, the court shall ascertain the amount of money of the estate which has come to the hands of the personal representative from all sources and the amount of claims allowable against the estate, and may order the payment of the claims so allowable. If it appears that there is not sufficient assets to pay the whole of the debts and expenses of administration, the court may apportion, in accordance with the provisions of this law, among the creditors that percentage of their claims as appears will not adversely affect the rights of other creditors or the payment of administration expenses. The court may order that the personal representative pay the claims allowable against the estate according to the apportionment, reserving sufficient assets to pay expected claims and also reserving apportionments made on claims which remain undecided until decision is had thereon.

(RSMo 1939 224, A.L. 1955 p. 385 202, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Prior revisions: 1929 225; 1919 224; 1909 233

Effective 1-1-81



Creditor may have execution, when.

473.573. If an executor or administrator fails to pay any claim ordered to be paid, in accordance with an order under section 473.570 when demanded, the clerk of the court, on application of the creditor, and being satisfied that the demand has been made, shall issue execution for the amount ordered to be paid, and costs, against the property, goods and chattels and real estate of the executor or administrator.

(RSMo 1939 226, A.L. 1955 p. 385 203)

Prior revisions: 1929 227; 1919 226; 1909 235



Scire facias against sureties, when.

473.577. If an execution is returned unsatisfied, the creditor may sue out of the court a scire facias against any one or more of the sureties of the executor or administrator, referring to the bond, the order of payment, the execution and return, and requiring the surety to show cause why judgment should not be rendered against him for the amount ordered to be paid and still unsatisfied.

(RSMo 1939 227, A.L. 1955 p. 385 204)

Prior revisions: 1929 228; 1919 227; 1909 236



Proceedings on scire facias.

473.580. The scire facias may be directed to and served in any county in this state, and if, upon return thereof, good cause to the contrary is not shown, the court shall render judgment against the surety for the amount unpaid and costs and award execution therefor.

(RSMo 1939 228, A.L. 1955 p. 385 205)

Prior revisions: 1929 229; 1919 228; 1909 237



Petition for final settlement and distribution.

473.583. At the time of filing of a final settlement the executor or administrator shall petition the court to allow and approve his settlement and if the estate is in a proper condition to be closed, he shall also petition the court for an order authorizing him to distribute the estate, and shall specify in the petition the persons to whom distribution is to be made and the proportions or parts of the estate to which each is entitled.

(L. 1955 p. 385 206)



Notice of final settlement.

473.587. When an estate is in a condition to be closed before filing his final settlement and petition for distribution, the personal representative shall give, or cause to be given, at least twenty-nine days' notice by publication in the manner provided by section 472.100 stating (1) that he will file final settlement and petition for distribution on a date certain or as continued by the court, and (2) that objections to the final settlement or petition for distribution shall be in writing and filed within twenty days from the date the final settlement is filed. The notice shall be published once a week for four consecutive weeks, the last publication to be at least seven days prior to the date specified therein for filing of the settlement. At least fifteen days before the date specified in the published notice the personal representative shall give, or cause to be given, the same notice by ordinary mail to each heir and devisee then interested in the estate whose name and address is disclosed by the court records, and who has not, in writing, waived such notice. Prior to the approval of the final settlement, proof of service as provided in section 472.110 and any written waivers shall be filed.

(L. 1955 p. 385 207, A.L. 1957 p. 829, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1981 S.B. 117)

Effective 6-10-81



Objections to settlement, when filed--form--hearing--approval.

473.590. Within twenty days after the filing of the final settlement and petition for distribution, or such longer time as may be ordered by the court, any interested person may file written objections thereto. The court may receive and file a final settlement before the date specified in the published notice, or before the date to which the settlement was continued, but in case of such premature filing the twenty-day period for filing objections shall run from the date specified in the published notice or the date to which the settlement was continued, as the case may be. The objections must be in writing and clearly state the specific grounds of objection and the modification desired. If no objections are filed, the court may approve the final settlement and order distribution as prayed, without hearing if it deems such action proper. If objections are filed, or if the court does not deem it proper to approve the final settlement and order distribution as prayed without hearing, a hearing on the matter shall be had.

(L. 1955 p. 385 208, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Credit for uncollectible debts shown in inventory.

473.593. At his final settlement, the court shall give credit to the executor or administrator for any debt charged in the inventory as due to the estate, if the court is satisfied that the debt was not really due to the estate, or that it had been balanced or reduced by offsets in any court of competent jurisdiction, or that the debtor was insolvent, or that from any other cause it was impossible for the executor or administrator to have collected the claim by the exercise of due diligence.

(RSMo 1939 231, A.L. 1955 p. 385 209)

Prior revisions: 1929 232; 1919 231; 1909 240



Conclusiveness of order approving final settlement.

473.597. Upon the approval of the final settlement of an executor or administrator, the executor or administrator and his sureties, subject to the right of appeal and to the power of the court to vacate its final orders, shall be relieved from liability for the administration of his trust prior to his final settlement, including liability with respect to the investment of the assets of the estate. The court may disapprove the final settlement in whole or in part and surcharge the executor or administrator for any loss caused by any breach of duty.

(L. 1955 p. 385 210)



Accounting for assets received and disbursed after final settlement.

473.600. Receipts and disbursements of the executor or administrator, subsequent to the filing of his final settlement, shall be reported to the court before discharge. A settlement thereof, together with an estimate of the expenses of closing the estate, shall be made by the court and included in the order of distribution, or the court may treat the statement as a supplementary settlement and act on the same with or without notice but, if the court determines that notice is required or the executor or administrator or his sureties so request, notice shall be given in the manner prescribed by the court.

(L. 1955 p. 385 212)



Settlement on death, resignation, or removal of personal representative.

473.603. 1. If a personal representative dies, resigns, becomes legally disabled or his letters are revoked, he or his legal representatives or conservator shall file final settlement and shall account for, pay and deliver to his successor, or to the surviving or remaining personal representative all money and property of every kind, and all rights, credits, deeds, evidences of debt and such papers of every kind of the decedent, at such time and in such manner as the court orders. The final settlement may be made and approved without notice or after giving notice to the persons and in the manner directed by the court.

2. If a deceased personal representative leaves no estate subject to administration, and letters are issued to his personal representative solely for the purpose of making settlement under this section, the cost in the court proceeding in which letters are issued to the personal representative of the deceased personal representative shall be taxed in the estate of which he was personal representative; and, in the administration proceeding in the estate of the deceased personal representative there need be no publication as required by section 473.033.

(RSMo 1939 48, A.L. 1955 p. 385 213, A.L. 1957 p. 829, A.L. 1983 S.B. 44 & 45)

Prior revisions: 1929 48; 1919 47; 1909 55



Proceedings to compel settlement--judgment, enforcement.

473.607. 1. On the application of any successor or surviving personal representative or of any interested person the court may order any personal representative or his legal representatives or any other person to file any final settlement required by this law or by the order of the court, and may attach and commit for contempt any person who fails to file the settlement within the time fixed by the court until he complies with the order of the court.

2. The court, on the application of any successor or surviving personal representative or of any interested person, may also ascertain what quantity and kind of property of the decedent was in the hands of a personal representative who has failed to file his final settlement as required by this law or by the order of the court, or whose personal representative or conservator has failed to file settlement and may render judgment against the personal representative and his sureties therefor. The judgment may be enforced by execution or, in case delivery of specific property or papers is required, by attachment and commitment of his person until delivery is made.

3. An application filed under this section shall be set for hearing and at least ten days' notice of the time and place of the hearing thereon shall be given all parties affected thereby, by the clerk, and shall be served in the manner directed by the court in accordance with section 472.100.

(L. 1955 p. 385 214, A.L. 1983 S.B. 44 & 45)



Distribution, when required.

473.610. Executors and administrators shall not be compelled to make distribution or pay legacies until six months after the date of the letters, unless the legacies specified would be perishable, or subject to injury if retained six months.

(RSMo 1939 235, A.L. 1955 p. 385 215)

Prior revisions: 1929 236; 1919 235; 1909 244



Partial distribution.

473.613. 1. Subject to the provisions of section 473.618, upon application of the executor or administrator at any time, or on application of any distributee after the expiration of six months from the date of letters, the court may order the executor or administrator to deliver to any distributee any specific real or personal property, or the possession thereof, to which he is entitled or may decree partial distribution if the court believes that other distributees and claimants are not prejudiced thereby. Within a reasonable time after distribution of property under an order or decree made on application of the executor or administrator and before the decree of final distribution, or at any time before the decree of final distribution if partial distribution was not made on application of the executor or administrator, the court may order the distributee to return all or a part of the property or the value thereof. But no order of return shall be made unless application therefor is filed within the time prescribed by section 473.637 and for the purposes therein provided or for other proper purpose.

2. The partial distribution under this section may be decreed with or without notice to interested parties, as ordered by the court. A decree of partial distribution made after notice to interested persons is as conclusive as a decree of final distribution with respect to the estate distributed except to the extent that other distributees and claimants are deprived of the fair share or amount which they would otherwise receive on final distribution.

3. Before partial distribution is made, the court, upon the request of the executor or administrator, shall require that security be given for the return of the property so distributed to the extent necessary to satisfy the interest of any distributee or claimant prejudiced by the distribution. If partial distribution is made without such request for security, the executor or administrator and his sureties are liable for any loss or damage sustained by any interested party as a result thereof.

(L. 1955 p. 385 216, A.L. 1957 p. 829, A.L. 1985 S.B. 35, et al.)



Decree of final distribution.

473.617. 1. After the expiration of the time limit for the filing of claims, the executor or administrator, if the estate is in a condition to be closed, shall file his final settlement and at the same time petition the court to decree the final distribution of the estate.

2. In its decree of final distribution, the court shall designate the persons to whom distribution is to be made, and the proportions or parts of the estate, or the amounts, to which each is entitled under the will and the provisions of this law, including the provisions regarding advancements, election by the surviving spouse and minor children, lapse, renunciation and equitable retainer or setoff. Every tract of real property so distributed shall be specifically described therein. The decree shall find that the estate is in a condition to be closed; and if all claims have been paid, it shall so state; otherwise the decree shall state that all claims except those therein specified are paid and shall describe the claims for the payment of which a special fund is set aside, and the amount of the fund; if any contingent claims which have been duly allowed are still unpaid and have not become absolute, such claims shall be described in the decree, which shall state whether the distributees take subject to them. If a fund is set aside for the payment of contingent claims, the decree shall provide for the distribution of such fund in the event that all or a part of it is not needed to satisfy the contingent claims. If a decree of partial distribution has been previously made, the decree of final distribution shall expressly confirm it, or, for good cause, shall modify the decree and state specifically what modifications are made.

3. If a distributee dies before distribution to him of his share of the estate, his share may be distributed to the executor or administrator of his estate, if there is one; or if no administration on his estate is had and none is necessary according to the provisions of sections 473.090 to 473.107, the share of the distributee shall be distributed in accordance therewith.

4. The decree of final distribution is a conclusive determination of the persons who are the successors in interest to the estate of the decedent and of the extent and character of their interests therein, subject only to the right of appeal and the right to reopen the decree. It operates as the final adjudication of the transfer of the right, title and interest of the decedent to the distributees therein designated; but no transfer before or after the decedent's death by an heir or devisee shall affect the decree, nor shall the decree affect any rights so acquired by grantees from the heirs or devisees.

5. Whenever the decree of final distribution includes real property, a certified copy thereof shall be recorded by the executor or administrator in every county of this state in which any real property distributed by the decree is situated. The cost of recording the decree shall be charged to the estate.

6. Subject to the provisions of section 473.618, the personal representative shall make prompt distribution of the assets of the estate after entry of any order of distribution.

(L. 1955 p. 385 217, A.L. 1985 S.B. 35, et al.)



Notice to judgment creditors of distribution--contents of request.

473.618. 1. Any judgment creditor of a distributee desiring notice of any partial or final distribution or both, may, at any time subsequent to the granting of letters testamentary or of administration, file with the clerk of the probate division of the circuit court having jurisdiction a duly acknowledged request for such notice and shall cause a copy of the request to be served upon the personal representative administering the estate or upon such representative's attorney of record. The request shall specify the name and address of the judgment creditor, the name of the debtor-distributee and the identity of the estate. A separate request shall be filed for each judgment creditor of a distributee desiring notice. After the serving and filing of any such request, any distributee mentioned in the request may be referred to as a "debtor-distributee".

2. No partial or final distribution shall be made by a supervised or independent personal representative to a debtor-distributee after the serving and filing of any such request until at least twenty days after such representative has caused to be deposited in the United States mail an envelope certified or registered, and with postage fully prepaid, enclosing a notice of the distribution and the date when such distribution will be made, addressed to each person whose name and address is set forth in a request served and filed as provided in subsection 1 of this section. Actual receipt by the addressee of the envelope shall not be necessary to establish compliance with the requirements of this section. The receipt issued by the United States Post Office for certified or registered mail to evidence that the envelope has been delivered by the personal representative to the United States Post Office shall constitute proof of compliance with the notice requirements of this section. Any distribution made by any personal representative to a debtor-distributee prior to the time specified in the notice required by this subsection shall not discharge such representative as against a garnishment, attachment or other judicial process with respect to such debtor-distributee which is served upon such representative or upon such representative's attorney of record by or in behalf of any judgment creditor who has served and filed a request as described in subsection 1 of this section if such distribution is made after the serving and filing of such request by such judgment creditor and if such garnishment, attachment or other judicial process is served upon such personal representative or such representative's attorney of record prior to the scheduled date of such distribution.

(L. 1985 S.B. 35, et al., A.L. 1996 S.B. 869)

Effective 7-1-97



Order in which assets are appropriated--abatement.

473.620. 1. When it is necessary that there be an abatement of the shares of the distributees, they shall, subject to the provisions of the will, abate, without any preference or priority as between real and personal property, in the following order:

(1) Property not disposed of by the will;

(2) Residuary devises;

(3) General legacies;

(4) Specific devises. A general legacy charged on any specific property or fund for the purposes of this section is deemed property specifically devised to the extent of the value of the thing on which it is charged. Upon the failure or insufficiency of the thing on which it is charged, it is deemed a general legacy to the extent of such failure or insufficiency.

2. Subject to the provisions of the will, and to section 473.623, devises of the same class shall abate proportionately.

3. If the provisions of the will or the testamentary plan or the express or implied purpose of the devise would be defeated by the order of appropriation and application prescribed by subsection 1 hereof, the property of the testator shall be apportioned in the manner found necessary to give effect to the intention of the testator.

(L. 1955 p. 385 218)



Contribution between devisees.

473.623. When it is necessary under the provisions of section 473.620 that there be an abatement of specific devises, whether of real or personal property, the court may by order determine the manner in which such abatement shall be accomplished, so that the burden of such abatement will be borne by all specific devisees proportionately according to the value of their respective specific devises, and if any specific devise is sold or applied to accomplish such abatement, the other specific devisees shall be obligated to contribute the respective amounts necessary so that the burden of such abatement will be borne proportionately as provided in this section. The court in its order shall determine the respective amounts to be so contributed and the same may be recovered by the executor or administrator or by the devisees entitled thereto.

(L. 1955 p. 385 219, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634)

Effective 1-2-79



Advancements to be determined.

473.627. All questions of advancements made, or alleged to have been made by an intestate to any heir may be heard and determined by the court at the time of the hearing on the petition for final distribution or at any time prior thereto. The amount of every advancement shall be specified in the decree of final distribution.

(L. 1955 p. 385 220)



Right of retainer.

473.630. When a distributee of an estate is indebted to the estate, the amount of the indebtedness if due, or the present worth of the indebtedness, if not due, may be treated as an offset by the executor or administrator against any testate or intestate property, real or personal, of the estate to which such distributee is entitled. An offset hereunder shall be treated as if made as of the time of the death of the decedent and interest shall be adjusted accordingly.

(L. 1955 p. 385 221)



Interest on general legacies.

473.633. 1. All legacies, other than residuary ones or chattels, shall bear interest from twelve months after the date of the death of the testator at a rate equal to that allowed by law on money due upon order of the court. If the court finds that the legacies cannot be paid without jeopardizing the rights of interested parties because of litigation or other circumstances, the court shall determine what rate of interest, if any, not exceeding the rate allowed by law on money due upon order of the court, shall be allowed, after taking into consideration the income of the estate.

2. The yield on written instruments, shares of corporate stock and similar securities specifically devised shall be deemed a part of the legacy and shall be turned over to the legatee.

(RSMo 1939 237, A.L. 1955 p. 385 222, A.L. 1985 S.B. 35, et al.)

Prior revisions: 1929 238; 1919 237; 1909 246



Distributees to refund, when--judgment.

473.637. If after the payment of the legacies or distributions, it becomes necessary that the same, or any part thereof, be refunded for the payment of claims, the court on application filed within five years from the payment of the legacies or distributions shall apportion the same among the legatees or distributees, according to the amount received by them, except that specific legacies are not required to be refunded unless the residue is not sufficient to satisfy the claims. If any legatee or distributee fails to refund, according to the order, on motion of the executor or administrator, the court shall, after ten days' notice in writing has been given to the legatee or distributee, enter judgment for the amount apportioned to him.

(RSMo 1939 246, A.L. 1955 p. 385 223)

Prior revisions: 1929 247; 1919 246; 1909 255



Partition of personal property in kind.

473.640. If personal property which is to be distributed may be divided in kind, the court may order a partition thereof among the parties entitled; and for that purpose the court may appoint not more than three commissioners, disinterested and of no kin to the parties, who, after making affidavit that they will honestly and impartially discharge the trust reposed in them, shall make partition as equal in kind as the value and numbers of the articles of property will admit and report their proceedings to the court at a time fixed by the court. The court shall consider all objections to the report and may approve or modify the report and order partition accordingly or it may reject the report and proceed to make partition or appoint new commissioners as often as necessary to accomplish an equitable partition which will meet the approval of the court.

(RSMo 1939 239, A.L. 1955 p. 385 224, A.L. 1959 S.B. 141)

Prior revisions: 1929 240; 1919 239; 1909 248



Property sold to effect partition, when.

473.643. 1. If personal property cannot be divided in kind with advantage to the distributees, and it is not to their advantage that the same be sold by the personal representative, then, upon the application of a majority of those entitled to distribution, the court may order the same to be delivered to such person as they designate, in which selection minors shall act by their conservator, who shall proceed to collect, by suit or otherwise, all notes, accounts and choses in action so received in the name of the distributees, and dispose of all property so coming into his possession or under his control to their best interest, collecting the proceeds thereof, and distribute all moneys realized to the parties entitled thereto.

2. Such person, in the discretion of the court, may be required to give bond to the state of Missouri, with good securities, in such sum as the court may deem proper, for the faithful discharge of his duty, and for payment of parties entitled thereto of all moneys collected.

3. The party may be discharged from the trust upon his application, or upon the application of a majority of the heirs, when it appears to the court that it is not for the best interest of distributees that the trust be continued.

(RSMo 1939 240, A.L. 1955 p. 385 225, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634, A.L. 1983 S.B. 44 & 45)

Prior revisions: 1929 241; 1919 240; 1909 249



Notice of application for partition.

473.647. Each person entitled to partition of personal property, not applying therefor, shall be notified, in writing, of the application ten days before the order is made.

(RSMo 1939 241, A.L. 1955 p. 385 226, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Prior revisions: 1929 242; 1919 241; 1909 250

Effective 1-1-81



Distributee may credit share against purchase price, when.

473.650. If a distributee becomes a purchaser of the property at a sale for the purpose of making distribution, his receipt for the amount of his share shall be received in payment of an equal amount of the purchase money, and the court shall allow the amount of such receipt as so much distributed under the order of court.

(RSMo 1939 243, A.L. 1955 p. 385 227)

Prior revisions: 1929 244; 1919 243; 1909 252



Proceedings to compel distribution.

473.653. When an order is made by the court upon an executor or administrator to pay over money to the widow, heirs, legatees or distributees of an estate, and he fails to make such payment, the same proceedings may be had against him and his sureties to compel payment as are authorized in cases where an executor or administrator fails when ordered to pay claims allowed against an estate.

(RSMo 1939 245, A.L. 1955 p. 385 229)

Prior revisions: 1929 246; 1919 245; 1909 254



Distribution.

473.657. 1. Distribution to a distributee may be made to the distributee or to a person holding a power of attorney properly executed by the distributee in accordance with the law of the place of execution, or to the distributee's personal representative, guardian, or conservator.

2. Distribution may be made to the trustees of a trust account established pursuant to sections 402.199 to 402.208 if the court finds that the distributee qualifies as a life beneficiary under subdivision (1) of section 402.200 and that such distribution would be in the best interest of the distributee as prescribed by section 475.093.

(RSMo 1939 251, A.L. 1955 p. 385 230, A.L. 1983 S.B. 44 & 45 merged with H.B. 369, A.L. 1996 S.B. 494 merged with S.B. 768, A.L. 1999 S.B. 211, A.L. 2011 S.B. 70)

Prior revisions: 1929 252; 1919 251



Discharge of personal representative.

473.660. Upon the filing of receipts or other evidence satisfactory to the court that distribution has been made as ordered in the final decree, the court shall enter an order of discharge. The discharge so obtained operates as a release from the duties of personal representative and operates as a bar to any suit against the personal representative and his sureties unless the suit is commenced within one year from the date of the discharge. Nothing in this section shall be construed to change the effect of an order approving final settlement as provided in section 473.597.

(L. 1955 p. 385 228, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



No administration within one year after death and no will probated, interested party may petition--contents of petition--notice.

473.663. 1. If a person has died leaving property or any interest in property in this state and if no administration has been commenced on the estate of such decedent in this state within one year after the date of decedent's death, and if no written will of such decedent has been presented for probate in this state within the time period provided in subsection 2 of section 473.050, then any person claiming an interest in such property as heir or through an heir may file a petition in the probate division of the circuit court which would be of proper venue for the administration of the estate of such decedent to determine the heirs of the decedent at the date of the decedent's death and their respective interests or interests as heirs in the estate. The petition shall include all of the following known by, or can with reasonable diligence be ascertained by, the petitioner:

(1) The name, age, domicile, last residence address and the fact and date of death of the decedent;

(2) The names, relationship to the decedent and residence addresses of the heirs of the decedent at the time of the decedent's death;

(3) The names and residence addresses of any persons claiming through an heir of the decedent when such heir has died after the decedent;

(4) A particular description of the property of the decedent in this state with respect to which the determination is sought and the value of such property.

2. Upon the filing of the petition, the court shall set the time for the hearing of the petition, notice of which shall be given to:

(1) All persons known or believed to claim any interest in the property as heir or through an heir of the decedent;

(2) All persons who may at the date of the filing of the petition be shown by the records of conveyances of the county in which any real property described in such petition is located to claim any interest in such real property through the heirs of the decedent; and

(3) Any unknown heirs of the decedent.

3. The notice shall be given by publication by publishing the notice once each week for four consecutive weeks, the last insertion of publication to be at least seven days before the date set for the hearing. In addition, notice under subdivision (1) of subsection 2 of section 472.100, or notice by registered or certified mail, as the court shall direct, shall be given to every person named in the petition whose address is known to the petitioner.

4. Upon the hearing of the petition, the court shall make a decree determining the person or persons entitled to the property with respect to which a determination is sought, and their respective interest in the property as heirs or successors in interest to such heirs. The decree is conclusive evidence of the facts determined in such decree as against all parties to the proceedings.

5. A certified copy of the decree shall be recorded at the expense of the petitioner in each county in which any real property described in the decree is situated.

6. This section shall apply to those persons whose deaths occur on or after July 13, 1989.

(L. 1955 p. 385 231, A.L. 1957 p. 829, A.L. 1971 S.B. 85, A.L. 1982 S.B. 497, A.L. 1989 H.B. 145, A.L. 1996 S.B. 494)

Effective 5-23-96



Definitions.

473.665. As used in sections 473.665 to 473.694:

(1) "Local administration" means administration by a personal representative appointed in this state pursuant to proceedings described in this chapter;

(2) "Local personal representative" includes any personal representative appointed in this state pursuant to appointment proceedings described in this chapter, and excludes foreign personal representatives who acquire the power of a local personal representative pursuant to section 473.677;

(3) "Resident creditor" means a person domiciled in, or doing business in, this state, who is, or could be, a claimant against an estate of a nonresident decedent.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Administration of estate of nonresident decedent as original proceeding.

473.668. Administration proceedings and other procedures in this state with respect to property, tangible or intangible, of a nonresident decedent which is within the jurisdiction of this state are original proceedings or procedures conducted under the authority of this state solely, and are independent of and not ancillary to proceedings or procedures in any other state or country, and shall be had and conducted in this state as if the decedent were a resident, subject to and supplemented by the provisions in sections 473.671 to 473.694.

(L. 1957 p. 860 1)



Jurisdiction of property--situs of intangibles.

473.671. The courts of this state have jurisdiction over all tangible and intangible property of a nonresident decedent having a situs in this state. For the purpose of such jurisdiction it is recognized as to other states and countries, and declared with respect to this state, that the situs of debts, rights and choses in action which are embodied in legal instruments such as stock certificates, bonds, negotiable instruments, insurance policies payable to an estate and other similar items is in that state or country in which such legal instruments are located, so that whatever state or country has jurisdiction of such instruments has, and of right ought to have, jurisdiction to administer upon or otherwise direct the disposition of the debts, rights and choses in action which they embody, or voluntarily relinquish such jurisdiction to other states and countries. For such purpose the situs of other debts, rights and choses in action is where the debtor is found.

(L. 1957 p. 860 2)



Applicability of law to estate of nonresident decedent--exceptions.

473.675. The law of this state respecting proceedings, procedures and substantive rights relating in any way to the property in this state of a nonresident decedent and its disposition, including by way of illustration, but not limited to, all matters relating to (i) the commencement and conduct of an administration, (ii) distributions during or at the conclusion of an administration, (iii) any trust created under the will of a nonresident decedent, shall apply as if the decedent had been a resident of this state, subject to the following:

(1) Nothing in sections 473.668 to 473.694 shall be deemed to affect:

(a) Methods of proving foreign wills or the admissibility of such wills to probate or to record;

(b) The rights of a surviving spouse electing to accept or take against the will of a nonresident decedent, or the method of such election;

(c) The right of a person to take as a pretermitted heir or otherwise against the will of a nonresident decedent;

(d) The effect of divorce or the birth of a child as working or not working a revocation or partial revocation of the will of a nonresident;

(e) The effect of the contest in another jurisdiction of the will of a nonresident decedent upon its validity in Missouri;

(f) The applicability of any law in determining the validity of the execution of the will of a nonresident decedent;

(g) The determination of the ultimate burden of estate taxes imposed by reason of the death of a nonresident decedent;

(2) Real property of an intestate nonresident decedent descends according to the laws of this state, and his personal property devolves to his heirs or next of kin determined in accordance with the laws of the state or country of his domicile;

(3) Support and family allowances to surviving spouses and unmarried minor children are governed by the more liberal (to them) of the laws of the decedent's domicile and the laws of this state; but the court of this state in making such allowance and in ruling on applications for orders of refusal of letters of administration shall take into account any allowance which may be made in other jurisdictions and satisfied from property therein.

(4) Notwithstanding the requirements of this section that distributions during or at the conclusion of an administration shall be made as if the decedent were a resident, if the court finds that hardship to a foreign creditor would result therefrom or that the best interests of all persons having an interest in the estate would be forwarded by making a distribution to a foreign personal representative, the court may, in its discretion, order such distribution to the extent it finds necessary to avoid such hardship or to forward such interests.

(5) If the aggregate of liabilities of the estate in all jurisdictions exceeds its aggregate assets, the court shall order distribution, as far as practicable, so that all the creditors of decedent's estate, here and elsewhere, may receive a share in proportion to their respective obligations, with regard being given to any preferential rights determined by the court. To this end, distribution to a foreign personal representative may be ordered if all creditors whose claims have been allowed in the administration in this state shall have received their just proportions that would be due to them if the whole of the estate of the decedent, wherever found, were divided among all creditors in proportion to their respective obligations, after applying Missouri law respecting preferences to different species of obligations, and if and to the extent that the court finds such preference to be equitable under all the circumstances of the particular case.

(L. 1957 p. 860 3, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Filing of copy of appointment of domiciliary foreign personal representative, when.

473.676. If no local administration, or application or petition therefor, is pending in this state, a domiciliary foreign personal representative may file with a probate division of the circuit court in this state, in a county in which property belonging to the decedent is located, authenticated copies of his appointment and of any official bond he has given.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Domiciliary foreign personal representative, powers, duties and obligations.

473.677. A domiciliary foreign personal representative, who has complied with section 473.676, may exercise as to assets in this state all powers of a local personal representative and may maintain actions and proceedings in this state, subject to any conditions imposed upon nonresident parties generally. When acting in this state under this authority, a domiciliary personal representative has the duties and obligations of a local personal representative, except that he may pay or deliver personal property under section 473.691.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Power of domiciliary foreign personal representative, when executed--termination of powers--substitution of local personal representative, when.

473.678. The power of a domiciliary foreign personal representative under section 473.677 or 473.691 shall be exercised only if there is no administration, or application therefor, pending in this state. An application or petition for local administration of the estate terminates the power of the foreign personal representative to act under section 473.677, but the local court may allow the foreign personal representative to exercise limited powers to preserve the estate. No person who, before receiving actual notice of a pending local administration, has changed his position in reliance upon the powers of a foreign personal representative shall be prejudiced by reason of the application or petition for, or grant of, local administration. The local personal representative acquires all the rights, and is subject to all duties and obligations, which have accrued by virtue of the exercise of the powers by the foreign personal representative, and may be substituted for him in any action or proceedings in this state.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Priority of personal representative appointed by court of decedent's domicile--exceptions.

473.682. A personal representative appointed by a court of the decedent's domicile has priority over all other persons for appointment as local personal representative, except where the decedent's will nominates different persons to be personal representative in this state and in the state of domicile. The domiciliary personal representative may nominate another, who shall have the same priority as the domiciliary personal representative.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Foreign personal representative subject to jurisdiction of courts of state, when.

473.685. A foreign personal representative submits himself to the jurisdiction of the courts of this state by:

(1) Filing authenticated copies of his appointment as provided in section 473.676;

(2) Receiving payment of money or taking delivery of personal property under section 473.691; or

(3) Doing any act as a personal representative in this state which would have given the state jurisdiction over him as an individual. Jurisdiction under subdivision (2) is limited to the money or value of personal property collected.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Foreign personal representative also subject to court's jurisdiction to same extent as decedent prior to death.

473.687. In addition to jurisdiction conferred by section 473.685, a foreign personal representative is subject to the jurisdiction of the courts of this state to the same extent that his decedent was subject to jurisdiction immediately prior to death.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Service of process on foreign personal representative, how made.

473.689. 1. Service of process may be made upon a foreign personal representative by registered or certified mail, addressed to his last reasonably ascertainable address. Notice by ordinary first class mail is sufficient if registered or certified mail service to the addressee is unavailable. Service may be made upon a foreign personal representative in the manner in which service could have been made under other laws of this state on either the foreign personal representative or his decedent immediately prior to death.

2. If service is made upon a foreign personal representative as provided in subsection 1, he shall be allowed at least thirty days within which to appear or respond.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Debtor or custodian may pay or deliver personal property to foreign representative, when.

473.691. Any person, firm or corporation upon whom no demand has been made by a personal representative or other person authorized by this state to collect a nonresident decedent's personal property may, at any time sixty days or more after his death, transfer, pay or deliver personal property of the nonresident decedent to the foreign personal representative or, if none, to such other person as may be entitled thereto, under the laws of said foreign state, and shall not be liable for the debts of or claims against the nonresident decedent or his estate by reason of having made the transfer, payment or delivery.

(L. 1957 p. 861 6, A.L. 1959 S.B. 335, A.L. 1967 p. 643)



Adjudication against any personal representative of estate binding on local personal representative.

473.692. An adjudication rendered in any jurisdiction in favor of or against any personal representative of the estate is as binding on the local personal representative as if he were a party to the adjudication.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Effect of law on reciprocal corporate fiduciaries law.

473.694. Nothing in sections 473.668 to 473.694 authorizes any "foreign corporation", as the term is defined in section 362.600, to act in any fiduciary capacity except as such foreign corporation is expressly permitted so to act by the provisions of section 362.600.

(L. 1957 p. 860 7, A.L. 1971 S.B. 163)



Letters of administration for persons absent for five or more years--application--notice--hearing.

473.697. Whenever application shall be made to any probate division for letters of administration upon the estate of any person supposed to be dead, because of the absence of such person for five consecutive years from the place of his last known domicile within this state, or because such person was exposed to a specific peril of death due to a terrorist event, or because, having been a resident of this state, such person has heretofore gone from and has not returned to this state for five consecutive years, or, because, having been such resident of this state, such person shall hereafter go from and shall not return to this state for five consecutive years, or, because being a resident of this state, such person shall have so concealed or conducted himself within this state that he shall not have been heard of for five consecutive years by the judge of the probate division having jurisdiction of his estate, or by the persons interested therein, then said court, if satisfied that the applicant would be entitled to such letters if the supposed decedent were in fact dead, shall cause a notice to such supposed deceased person to be published in a newspaper, published in the county, once a week for four consecutive weeks, setting forth the fact that such application has been made, together with notice that on a day certain, which shall be at least two weeks after the last publication of such notice, the court will hear evidence concerning the alleged absence of the supposed decedent, and the circumstances and duration thereof. The persons applying for such letters of administration shall file a petition stating the facts upon which such application is based and the place where such supposed deceased person resided when last heard from by him or by any person within his knowledge.

(RSMo 1939 264, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634, A.L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 2002 S.B. 712)

Prior revisions: 1929 265; 1919 264; 1909 271

CROSS REFERENCE:

Presumption of death, when, 490.620



Who may testify.

473.700. At the hearing the court shall receive such legal evidence as shall be offered, for the purpose of ascertaining whether the presumption of death is established; and no person shall be disqualified to testify by reason of his or her relationship as husband or wife to the supposed deceased, or by reason of his or her interest in the estate of the person supposed to be dead.

(RSMo 1939 265)

Prior revisions: 1929 266; 1919 265; 1909 272



Publication of finding--time for rebuttal.

473.703. If satisfied, upon such hearing, that the legal presumption of death is established, the court shall so declare and it shall forthwith cause notice thereof to be published once a week for four consecutive weeks, in a newspaper published in the county, and also, if the court shall find that such supposed decedent resided in or was possessed of property located in any county in this or any other state at a time subsequent to his residence in the county in which applications are made, the notice of such publication shall be published in like manner in such other county. Such notice shall require the supposed decedent, if alive, or any other person for him, to produce to the court, within twelve weeks from the date of the last publication thereof, satisfactory evidence of the fact that he is still living; provided, that where publication is made in a daily newspaper, publication for each week after the first shall fall on the corresponding day of the week as did the first publication.

(RSMo 1939 266)

Prior revisions: 1929 267; 1919 266; 1909 273



Issuance of letters, when.

473.707. If, within such period of twelve weeks, evidence shall not be offered satisfactory to the court that said supposed decedent is in fact still living, then it shall be the duty of the court to issue letters of administration to the party entitled thereto; and said letters, until revoked, and all acts done in pursuance thereof and in reliance thereupon, shall be as valid as if the supposed decedent were in fact dead.

(RSMo 1939 267, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634)

Prior revisions: 1929 268; 1919 267; 1909 274

Effective 1-2-79



Revocation of letters, when--effect--procedure.

473.710. The court may revoke said letters of administration at any time, upon satisfactory proof that the supposed decedent is in fact alive. After such revocation all the powers of the administrator shall cease, but all receipts and disbursements of assets, and other acts previously done by him, shall remain as valid as if said letters were unrevoked; and the administrator shall thereupon make a settlement of his administration to the date of revocation, and shall transfer all assets remaining in his hands to said supposed decedent, or to his duly authorized agent or attorney; provided, nothing in sections 473.697 to 473.720 contained shall validate the title of any person to any money or property received as widow, next of kin or heir of such supposed decedent, but the same may be recovered from such parties in all cases in which such recovery could be had if said sections had not been passed.

(RSMo 1939 268, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634)

Prior revisions: 1929 269; 1919 268; 1909 275

Effective 1-2-79



Distributees to give bond before receiving estate.

473.713. Before the distribution of the proceeds of the estate of such supposed decedent shall be made, the persons entitled to receive the same, respectively, shall enter into a bond to the state of Missouri, with sufficient security, to be approved by the court having jurisdiction of said estate, in such sum and in such form as the court shall direct, conditioned that if said supposed decedent shall in fact be alive at the time of such distribution, then the distributees shall refund the amount received by them, on demand, with interest thereon from the date of such demand; but if any person entitled to receive such distribution shall be unable to give the security aforesaid, then the money which he would be entitled to receive shall be paid over to the county treasurer, and by him loaned at the highest rate of interest obtainable, on security approved by said probate division of the circuit court, which interest shall be paid annually to the person entitled thereto, and such money shall remain so at interest until the security aforesaid is given, or the court, upon application, shall order it to be paid to the person or persons entitled to receive the same.

(RSMo 1939 269, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634)

Prior revisions: 1929 270; 1919 269; 1909 276

Effective 1-2-79



Supposed decedent substituted for administrator, when--effect on actions, judgments.

473.717. 1. After the revocation of such letters of administration as aforesaid, the person erroneously supposed to be dead may, upon suggestion of said fact, filed of record, be substituted in all actions brought by the administrator of his estate, whether prosecuted to judgment or otherwise. He may, in all actions previously brought against his administrator, be substituted as defendant, on proper suggestion, filed by himself or by the plaintiff therein, but he shall not be compelled to go to trial in less than three months from the time of the filing of such suggestion.

2. Judgments recovered against the administrator before the revocation of his letters, as aforesaid, may be opened, upon application by the supposed decedent, if made by affidavit, denying specifically, on the knowledge of the affiant, the cause of action, or specifically alleging the existence of facts which would be a valid defense; but if within said three months, such application shall not be made, or, being made, the facts exhibited shall be adjudged an insufficient defense, the judgment shall be conclusive to all intents, saving the defendant's right to have the same reviewed, as in other cases, by appeal or by writ of error, as now provided by law. After the substitution of the supposed decedent as defendant in any judgment, as aforesaid, such judgment shall become a lien on his real estate situate in the county for which the court is held, and shall have the same force and effect as if said action had been originally instituted against said supposed decedent.

(RSMo 1939 270)

Prior revisions: 1929 271; 1919 270; 1909 277



Payment of costs.

473.720. The costs attending the issue of letters of administration, or the revocation, shall be paid out of the estate of the supposed decedent; and all costs arising upon an application for letters which are refused shall be paid by the applicant.

(RSMo 1939 271)

Prior revisions: 1929 272; 1919 271; 1909 278



Public administrators--qualifications--election--oath--bond--public administrator deemed public office, duties--salaried public administrators deemed county officials--City of St. Louis, appointments of administrators.

473.730. 1. Every county in this state, except the City of St. Louis, shall elect a public administrator at the general election in the year 1880, and every four years thereafter, who shall be ex officio public guardian and conservator in and for the public administrator's county. A candidate for public administrator shall be at least twenty-one years of age and a resident of the state of Missouri and the county in which he or she is a candidate for at least one year prior to the date of the general election for such office. The candidate shall also be a registered voter and shall be current in the payment of all personal and business taxes. Before entering on the duties of the public administrator's office, the public administrator shall take the oath required by the constitution, and enter into bond to the state of Missouri in a sum not less than ten thousand dollars, with two or more securities, approved by the court and conditioned that the public administrator will faithfully discharge all the duties of the public administrator's office, which bond shall be given and oath of office taken on or before the first day of January following the public administrator's election, and it shall be the duty of the judge of the court to require the public administrator to make a statement annually, under oath, of the amount of property in the public administrator's hands or under the public administrator's control as such administrator, for the purpose of ascertaining the amount of bond necessary to secure such property; and such court may from time to time, as occasion shall require, demand additional security of such administrator, and, in default of giving the same within twenty days after such demand, may remove the administrator and appoint another.

2. The public administrator in all counties, in the performance of the duties required by chapters 473, 474, and 475, is a public officer. The duties specified by section 475.120 are discretionary. The county shall defend and indemnify the public administrator against any alleged breach of duty, provided that any such alleged breach of duty arose out of an act or omission occurring within the scope of duty or employment.

3. After January 1, 2001, all salaried public administrators shall be considered county officials for purposes of section 50.333, subject to the minimum salary requirements set forth in section 473.742.

4. The public administrator for the city of St. Louis shall be appointed by a majority of the circuit judges and associate circuit judges of the twenty-second judicial circuit, en banc. Such public administrator shall meet the same qualifications and requirements specified in subsection 1 of this section for elected public administrators. The elected public administrator holding office on August 28, 2013, shall continue to hold such office for the remainder of his or her term.

(RSMo 1939 295, A. 1949 S.B. 1132, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634, A.L. 1983 S.B. 44 & 45, A.L. 1993 S.B. 88, A.L. 1996 S.B. 719, A.L. 2000 S.B. 542, A.L. 2003 H.B. 267, A.L. 2013 H.B. 163 merged with S.B. 99)

Prior revisions: 1929 296; 1919 293; 1909 299

*Transferred 1957; formerly 461.780



Certificate and oath--bond, how sued on.

473.733. The public administrator's certificate of election, if applicable, official oath and bond shall be filed and recorded with the probate clerk, and copies thereof, certified under the seal of such court, shall be evidence. Any person injured by the breach of such bond may sue upon the same in the name of the state for his own use.

(RSMo 1939 297, A.L. 1996 S.B. 719, A.L. 2013 H.B. 163 merged with S.B. 99)

Prior revisions: 1929 297; 1919 294; 1909 300



Administrators to have separate offices--St. Louis administrator in civil courts building--certain public administrators to have secretaries--clerical personnel to be provided, when.

473.737. 1. Each public administrator elected or appointed, as now or as hereafter provided for in sections 473.730 to 473.767, is hereby declared to be an officer for the county in which such administrator is elected or appointed. The county commissions of each county in this state shall make suitable provision for an office for the public administrator in the courthouse of the county if suitable space may be had for such an office, and shall be provided as soon as the county commission shall be of the opinion that the business in charge of the public administrator is such as to reasonably require a separate office for the convenience of the public. The public administrator of the city of St. Louis shall have suitable and convenient offices provided for him or her in the civil courts building by that city.

2. Each public administrator of a county, except a county of the first classification having a charter form of government, in which a state mental hospital is located, or any county of the second classification which contains a habilitation center operated by the department of mental health and which does not adjoin a county of the first classification shall be entitled to one secretary for one hundred cases or more handled by the office of the public administrator in the immediately preceding calendar year. Each secretary employed pursuant to the provisions of this subsection shall be paid in the same pay range as a court clerk II in the circuit court personnel system. All compensation paid secretaries employed pursuant to the provisions of this subsection shall be paid out of the county treasury and the commissioner of administration shall annually reimburse each county for the compensation so paid upon proper demand being made out of appropriations made for that purpose. The public administrator in such counties may also appoint a person to act as public administrator to serve during the absence of the public administrator.

3. The governing bodies of each county and each city not within a county of this state may provide clerical personnel, not qualifying as status of deputy, for the public administrator of the county, and such personnel shall be provided when the governing body is of the opinion that the business in charge of the public administrator is such as to reasonably require such personnel for the welfare of the public.

(RSMo 1939 296, A.L. 1945 p. 73, A.L. 1989 S.B. 127, et al., A.L. 1990 H.B. 1177 merged with S.B. 580, A.L. 1999 H.B. 275, A.L. 2013 H.B. 163 merged with S.B. 99)



Compensation for attendance at training session, certain public administrators, expenses shall be reimbursed, when (certain counties of the first classification).

473.739. 1. Each public administrator in counties of the first classification without a charter form of government who does not receive at least twenty-five thousand dollars in fees as otherwise allowed by law shall receive annual compensation of four thousand dollars and each such public administrator who does not receive at least forty-five thousand dollars in fees may request the county salary commission for an increase in annual compensation and the county salary commission may authorize an additional increase in annual compensation not to exceed ten thousand dollars.

2. Two thousand dollars of the compensation authorized in this section shall be payable to the public administrator only if he or she has completed at least twenty hours of instruction each calendar year relating to the operations of the public administrator's office when approved by a professional association of the county public administrators of Missouri unless exempted from the training by the professional association. The professional association approving the program shall provide a certificate of completion to each public administrator who completes the training program and shall send a list of certified public administrators to the treasurer of each county. Expenses incurred for attending the training session shall be reimbursed to the county public administrator in the same manner as other expenses as may be appropriated for that purpose.

(L. 1984 S.B. 601 13, A.L. 1987 S.B. 65, et al., A.L. 1990 S.B. 580, A.L. 1996 S.B. 719, A.L. 1997 S.B. 11, A.L. 2000 S.B. 542, A.L. 2010 S.B. 808)

(2000) In determining amount of annual compensation to be paid to public administrators, more specific provisions of this statute apply over those of section 50.333. State ex rel. Pate v. Mooney, 22 S.W.3d 766 (Mo.App.E.D.).



Compensation, Boone and Clay counties--removal from office--public administrator's fees paid to county, when--public administrator's salary in lieu of fees, when.

473.740. 1. In all first classification counties not having a charter form of government and containing a portion of a city having a population of four hundred thousand or more inhabitants, and in all first classification counties not having a charter form of government and having a population of one hundred ten thousand, but less than two hundred thousand inhabitants, the public administrator shall receive as total compensation for such public administrator's services an annual salary established pursuant to section 50.343, to be paid in equal monthly installments by the county. In any other counties of the first classification not having a charter form of government, the salary commission may elect by majority vote to establish a salary as the alternative total compensation to be offered as compensation to the public administrator, to be paid in equal monthly installments by the county. If the salary commission elects to establish such salary alternative, it shall be established at either the time set forth in section 50.343 or at the salary commission meeting prior to the general election for the election of the office of public administrator. Should the salary commission elect to establish such salary alternative, the newly elected public administrator shall then make a determination within thirty days after taking office whether such public administrator elects to receive such salary or receive fees as may be allowed by law to executors, administrators and personal representatives, unless the court, for special reasons, allows a higher compensation. The election by the public administrator shall be made in writing to the county clerk. Should the public administrator elect to receive a salary, the public administrator's office may not then change at any future time to receive fees in lieu of salary. The alternative salary, if election is made by the public administrator to accept such, shall be in lieu of any compensation as set forth in section 473.739. In all other counties, the public administrator shall receive the same compensation for such public administrator's services as may be allowed by law, and as set forth in section 473.739, to executors, administrators, and personal representatives, unless the court, for special reasons, allows a higher compensation. Any such public administrator may be removed from office in the same manner and for the same causes as commissioners of the county commission.

2. In all counties in which the public administrator is paid an annual salary by the county, the county shall receive all amounts which would have been paid to the public administrator for the administrator's services pursuant to this chapter if such public administrator were in a county in which the public administrator was not paid an annual salary as provided in subsection 1 of this section. All amounts received by the county pursuant to the provisions of this subsection shall be deposited in the county treasury.

(RSMo 1939 298, A.L. 1981 S.B. 423, A.L. 1987 S.B. 65, et al., A.L. 1992 H.B. 1571, A.L. 1995 H.B. 274 & 268, A.L. 1996 H.B. 1286)

Prior revisions: 1929 298; 1919 295; 1909 301

CROSS REFERENCE:

Public administrator Boone and Clay County compensation how determined, 50.343



County governing body may authorize additional compensation, when--maximum allowed--additional compensation to terminate, when (certain first class counties).

473.741. 1. In addition to the compensation otherwise authorized by law for public administrators in first class counties not having a charter form of government and containing a portion of a city having a population of four hundred thousand or more inhabitants, the governing body of each of such counties may authorize additional compensation for the public administrator to be paid from county funds. Total compensation for each such public administrator, including any compensation authorized under this section, shall not exceed thirty-four thousand dollars per annum.

2. Prior to February 1, 1984, and thereafter prior to February first in each year in which a general election will be held at which public administrators will be elected, the governing body of each county defined in subsection 1 of this section shall establish the additional compensation to be paid the public administrator under this section for the ensuing term of office, and such additional compensation shall be paid the public administrator throughout such ensuing term of office.

3. All provisions of this section which authorize the granting of additional compensation for public administrators in the counties defined in subsection 1 of this section shall terminate upon the issuance of an opinion by the Missouri supreme court which would result in the state of Missouri being obligated or required to pay any such additional compensation even though such additional compensation is formally approved or authorized by the governing body of a county.

(L. 1983 S.B. 57 4)



Salary schedule for public administrators, certain counties--administrator to choose salary or fee collection--certain administrators may join LAGERS.

473.742. 1. Each public administrator in counties of the second, third or fourth classification and in the city of St. Louis shall make a determination within thirty days after taking office whether such public administrator shall elect to receive a salary as defined herein or receive fees as may be allowed by law to executors, administrators and personal representatives. The election by the public administrator shall be made in writing to the county clerk. Should the public administrator elect to receive a salary, the public administrator's office may not then elect to change at any future time to receive fees in lieu of salary.

2. If a public administrator elects to be placed on salary, the salary shall be based upon the average number of open letters in the two years preceding the term when the salary is elected, based upon the following schedule:

(1) Zero to five letters: salary shall be a minimum of seven thousand five hundred dollars;

(2) Six to fifteen letters: salary shall be a minimum of fifteen thousand dollars;

(3) Sixteen to twenty-five letters: salary shall be a minimum of twenty thousand dollars;

(4) Twenty-six to thirty-nine letters: salary shall be a minimum of twenty-five thousand dollars;

(5) Public administrators with forty or more letters shall be considered full-time county officials and shall be paid according to the assessed valuation schedule set forth below:

Assessed valuation Salary

$8,000,000 to 40,999,999 $29,000

$41,000,000 to 53,999,999 $30,000

$54,000,000 to 65,999,999 $32,000

$66,000,000 to 85,999,999 $34,000

$86,000,000 to 99,999,999 $36,000

$100,000,000 to 130,999,999 $38,000

$131,000,000 to 159,999,999 $40,000

$160,000,000 to 189,999,999 $41,000

$190,000,000 to 249,999,999 $41,500

$250,000,000 to 299,999,999 $43,000

$300,000,000 to 449,999,999 $45,000

$450,000,000 to 599,999,999 $47,000

$600,000,000 to 749,999,999 $49,000

$750,000,000 to 899,999,999 $51,000

$900,000,000 to 1,049,999,999 $53,000

$1,050,000,000 to 1,199,999,999 $55,000

$1,200,000,000 to 1,349,999,999 $57,000

$1,350,000,000 and over $59,000;

(6) The public administrator in the city of St. Louis shall receive a salary not less than sixty-five thousand dollars;

(7) Two thousand dollars of the compensation authorized in this section shall be payable to the public administrator only if he or she has completed at least twenty hours of instruction each calendar year relating to the operations of the public administrator's office when approved by a professional association of the county public administrators of Missouri unless exempted from the training by the professional association. The professional association approving the program shall provide a certificate of completion to each public administrator who completes the training program and shall send a list of certified public administrators to the treasurer of each county. Expenses incurred for attending the training session shall be reimbursed to the county public administrator in the same manner as other expenses as may be appropriated for that purpose.

3. The initial compensation of the public administrator who elects to be put on salary shall be determined by the average number of letters for the two years preceding the term when the salary is elected. Salary increases or decreases according to the minimum schedule set forth in subsection 1 of this section shall be adjusted only after the number of open letters places the workload in a different subdivision for two consecutive years. Minimum salary increases or decreases shall only take effect upon a new term of office of the public administrator. The number of letters each year shall be determined in accordance with the reporting requirements set forth in law.

4. All fees collected by a public administrator who elects to be salaried shall be deposited in the county treasury or with the treasurer for the city of St. Louis.

5. Any public administrator in a county of the first classification without a charter form of government with a population of less than one hundred thousand inhabitants who elects to receive fees in lieu of a salary pursuant to this section may elect to join the Missouri local government employees' retirement system created pursuant to sections 70.600 to 70.755.

(L. 2000 S.B. 542, A.L. 2010 S.B. 808)



Duty of public administrator to take charge of estates, when.

473.743. It shall be the duty of the public administrator to take into his or her charge and custody the estates of all deceased persons, and the person and estates of all minors, and the estates or person and estate of all incapacitated persons in his or her county, in the following cases:

(1) When a stranger dies intestate in the county without relations, or dies leaving a will, and the personal representative named is absent, or fails to qualify;

(2) When persons die intestate without any known heirs;

(3) When persons unknown die or are found dead in the county;

(4) When money, property, papers or other estate are left in a situation exposed to loss or damage, and no other person administers on the same;

(5) When any estate of any person who dies intestate therein, or elsewhere, is left in the county liable to be injured, wasted or lost, when the intestate does not leave a known husband, widow or heirs in this state;

(6) The persons of all minors under the age of fourteen years, whose parents are dead, and who have no legal guardian or conservator;

(7) The estates of all minors whose parents are dead, or, if living, refuse or neglect to qualify as conservator, or, having qualified have been removed, or are, from any cause, incompetent to act as such conservator, and who have no one authorized by law to take care of and manage their estate;

(8) The estates or person and estate of all disabled or incapacitated persons in his or her county who have no legal guardian or conservator, and no one competent to take charge of such estate, or to act as such guardian or conservator, can be found, or is known to the court having jurisdiction, who will qualify;

(9) Where from any other good cause, the court shall order him to take possession of any estate to prevent its being injured, wasted, purloined or lost;

(10) When moneys are delivered to the public administrator from the county coroner;

(11) The public administrator shall act as trustee when appointed by the circuit court or the probate division of the circuit court.

(RSMo 1939 299, A.L. 1983 S.B. 44 & 45, A.L. 2007 S.B. 22 merged with S.B. 497, A.L. 2009 H.B. 481)

Prior revisions: 1929 299; 1919 296; 1909 302



Public administrator shall be ex officio public conservator.

473.747. The public administrator shall be ex officio public conservator and shall have charge of all estates of minors that may, by the order of the court, be placed in the public administrator's charge, and in such cases the public administrator shall be known and designated as public conservator.

(RSMo 1939 437, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634, A.L. 1983 S.B. 44 & 45, A.L. 1996 S.B. 719)

Prior revisions: 1929 438; 1919 434; 1909 464



Unenforceability of certain contract provisions requiring a public administrator to be personally responsible for debt or account of a ward or protectee.

473.748. 1. As used in this section, the terms conservator, guardian, protectee, and ward shall have the same definitions as in section 475.010.

2. Any term, provision, consideration, or covenant in any contract for treatment, goods, or services shall be unenforceable if such term, provision, consideration, or covenant requires a public administrator who is acting as a guardian or conservator to personally pay, assume, or guarantee the debt or account of a ward or protectee.

(L. 2006 S.B. 932)



Powers and duties under administration law.

473.750. In addition to the provisions of sections 473.730 to 473.767, he and his securities shall have the same powers as are conferred upon, and be subject to the same duties, penalties, provisions and proceedings as are enjoined upon or authorized against personal representatives, guardians and conservators by chapters 472 to 475, so far as the same may be applicable. He shall have power to administer oaths and affirmations in all matters relating or belonging to the exercise of his office.

(RSMo 1939 300, A.L. 1983 S.B. 44 & 45)

Prior revisions: 1929 300; 1919 297; 1909 303



Notice of administration, when and how given--penalty for failure.

473.753. It shall be the duty of every public administrator immediately upon taking charge of any estate, except those of which he shall have taken charge under the order of the court, for the purpose of administering the same, to file a notice of the fact in the office of the clerk of the court. If any public administrator shall fail to file the notice provided for in this section, he shall forfeit and pay to the persons entitled to the estate a sum not exceeding two hundred dollars, to be recovered before said court, on motion, and after reasonable notice thereof to said public administrator; and said court may, in its discretion, remove such public administrator from office.

(RSMo 1939 302, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634)

Prior revisions: 1929 302; 1919 299; 1909 305

Effective 1-2-79



Civil officers to inform public administrator as to property, when.

473.757. It shall be the duty of all civil officers to inform the public administrator of all property and estate known to them which is liable to loss, waste or injury, and which by law ought to be in the possession of the public administrator.

(RSMo 1939 303)

Prior revisions: 1929 303; 1919 300; 1909 306



Shall prosecute necessary suits.

473.760. The public administrator shall institute all manner of suits and prosecutions that may be necessary to recover the property, debts, papers or other estates of the person deceased, or of any minor, or disabled person, in his charge or custody.

(RSMo 1939 304, A.L. 1983 S.B. 44 & 45)

Prior revisions: 1929 304; 1919 301; 1909 307



Court may order public administrator to account to successor, when.

473.763. The court may at any time, for good cause shown, order the public administrator to account for and deliver all money, property or papers belonging to any estate in his hands to his successor in office, or to the heirs of said estate, or to any executor or administrator regularly appointed, as provided by law.

(RSMo 1939 305, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634)

Prior revisions: 1929 305; 1919 302; 1909 308

Effective 1-2-79



Public administrator, duties after expiration of term--duties prior to expiration of term, certain counties.

473.767. 1. In counties operating under fee retention, the public administrator shall before the first court day after the expiration of one year after their successor in office has qualified, file a final settlement as required by section 473.540 for all estates in their charge as public administrator in which final settlement can be made. On the first court day after the expiration of one year after the election of a successor to the public administrator, the judge of the probate division, upon the judge's own motion, shall order the public administrator to account for and deliver all money, property, or papers belonging to all estates in his or her hands in which final settlement cannot be made, to the successor in office, or to the heirs of any estate, or to any executor or administrator regularly appointed, and such accounting and delivery shall be accomplished during the sixty days next thereafter.

2. In counties where the public administrator is paid a salary, the public administrator shall deliver property and make necessary filings as required in this section prior to leaving his or her term of office.

3. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection 1 of this section, the former public administrator or their legal representative, upon approval and order of the judge of the probate division of the circuit court having jurisdiction over the estates in which the former public administrator has been appointed personal representative, guardian or conservator, shall turn over the administration of the estates to the successor public administrator. A copy of the annual account of each estate in part covering the term of the former public administrator shall be filed with the probate division by the successor public administrator and the successor public administrator shall be charged with the assets and liabilities shown thereby.

(RSMo 1939 301, A.L. 1955 p. 385 232, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634, A.L. 1981 S.B. 423, A.L. 1987 S.B. 65, et al., A.L. 1989 S.B. 181, A.L. 1990 S.B. 596, A.L. 1992 S.B. 817, A.L. 1993 S.B. 88, A.L. 1998 S.B. 764, A.L. 2000 S.B. 542)

Prior revisions: 1929 301; 1919 298; 1909 304

*Transferred 1957; formerly 461.890



Deputies, appointment, tenure, compensation, powers (first classification counties)--delegation of duties, certain counties.

473.770. 1. Whenever, in the judgment of any public administrator in any county of the first class, it is necessary for the proper and efficient conduct of the business of the public administrator's office that the public administrator appoint any deputies to assist the public administrator in the performance of his or her official duties as public administrator or as executor, administrator, personal representative, guardian, or conservator in any estates wherein the public administrator has been specially appointed, the public administrator may appoint one or more deputies to assist him or her in the performance of his or her duties as public administrator and as executor, administrator, personal representative, guardian, or conservator in the estates wherein the public administrator has been specially appointed. The appointment shall be in writing and shall be filed with the court, and, upon the filing, the court shall issue under its seal a certificate of the appointment for each deputy, stating that the appointee is vested with the powers and duties conferred by this section. The certificate shall be valid for one year from date, unless terminated prior thereto, and shall be renewed from year to year as long as the appointment remains in force, and may be taken as evidence of the authority of the deputy. The appointment and authority of any deputy may at any time be terminated by the public administrator by notice of the termination filed in the court, and upon termination the deputy shall surrender the public administrator's certificate of appointment.

2. In all counties of the first classification not having a charter form of government and containing a portion of a city having a population of three hundred thousand or more inhabitants, the compensation of each such deputy shall be set by the public administrator, with the approval of the governing body of the county, and shall be paid in equal monthly installments out of the county treasury. In all other counties of the first classification the compensation of each such deputy shall be prescribed and paid by the public administrator out of the fees to which he or she is legally entitled, and no part of such compensation shall be paid out of any public funds or assessed as costs or allowed in any estate.

3. Each deputy so appointed shall be authorized to perform such ministerial and nondiscretionary duties as may be delegated to him or her by the public administrator, including:

(1) Assembling, taking into possession, and listing moneys, checks, notes, stocks, bonds and other securities, and all other personal property of any and all estates in the charge of the public administrator;

(2) Depositing all moneys, checks, and other instruments for the payment of money in the bank accounts maintained by the public administrator for the deposit of such funds;

(3) Signing or countersigning any and all checks and other instruments for the payment of moneys out of such bank accounts, in pursuance of general authorization by the public administrator to the bank in which the same are deposited, as long as such authorization remains in effect;

(4) Entering the safe deposit box of any person or decedent whose estate is in the charge of the public administrator and any safe deposit box maintained by the public administrator for the safekeeping of assets in his or her charge, as a deputy of the public administrator, pursuant to general authorization given by the public administrator to the bank or safe deposit company in charge of any such safe deposit box, as long as such deputy-authorization remains in effect, and withdrawing therefrom and depositing therein such assets as may be determined by the public administrator. The bank or safe deposit company shall not be charged with notice or knowledge or any limitation of authority of the authorized deputy, unless specially notified in writing thereof by the public administrator, and may allow the deputy access to the safe deposit box, in the absence of notice, to the full extent allowable to the public administrator in person.

4. The enumeration of the foregoing powers shall not operate as an exclusion of any powers not specifically conferred. No authorized deputy shall exercise any power, other than as prescribed in this section, which shall require the exercise of a discretion enjoined by law to be exercised personally by the executor, administrator, personal representative, guardian, or conservator in charge of the estate to which the discretionary power refers.

5. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsections 3 and 4 of this section to the contrary, a public administrator in a county of the first classification having a charter form of government and containing all or part of a city with a population of at least three hundred thousand inhabitants, and a public administrator in any county of the first classification may delegate to any deputy appointed by the public administrator any of the duties of the public administrator enumerated in section 473.743, and sections 475.120 and 475.130. Such public administrator may also delegate to a deputy who is a licensed attorney the authority to execute inventories, settlements, surety bonds, pleadings and other documents filed in any court in the name of the public administrator, and the same shall have the force and effect as if executed by the public administrator.

(L. 1957 p. 869 1, 2, A.L. 1978 H.B. 1634, A.L. 1981 S.B. 423, A.L. 1983 S.B. 44 & 45, A.L. 1993 S.B. 88, A.L. 2005 H.B. 58 merged with S.B. 210)



Deputies, appointment in all counties but counties of the first classification--tenure--compensation--powers--delegation to deputies.

473.771. 1. Whenever, in the judgment of any public administrator in any county which is not a county of the first classification, it is necessary for the proper and efficient conduct of the business of his or her office that the public administrator appoint a deputy to assist the public administrator in the performance of his or her official duties as public administrator or as executor, administrator, personal representative, guardian, or conservator in any estates wherein the public administrator has been specially appointed, the public administrator may appoint a deputy to assist him or her in the performance of his or her duties as public administrator and as executor, administrator, personal representative, guardian, or conservator in the estates wherein the public administrator has been specially appointed. The appointment shall be in writing and shall be filed with the court, and, upon the filing, the court shall issue under its seal a certificate of the appointment for the deputy, stating that the appointee is vested with the powers and duties conferred by this section. The certificate shall be valid for one year from the date, unless terminated prior thereto, and shall be renewed from year to year as long as the appointment remains in force, and may be taken as evidence of the authority of the deputy. The appointment and authority of a deputy may at any time be terminated by the public administrator by notice of the termination filed in the court, and upon termination the deputy shall surrender his or her certificate of appointment.

2. The compensation of a deputy appointed pursuant to the provisions of this section shall be prescribed and paid by the public administrator out of the fees to which he or she is legally entitled.

3. A deputy appointed pursuant to the provisions of this section shall be authorized to perform such ministerial and nondiscretionary duties as may be delegated to him or her by the public administrator, including:

(1) Assembling, taking into possession, and listing moneys, checks, notes, stocks, bonds and other securities, and all other personal property of any and all estates in the charge of the public administrator;

(2) Depositing all moneys, checks, and other instruments for the payment of money in the bank accounts maintained by the public administrator for the deposit of such funds;

(3) Signing or countersigning any and all checks and other instruments for the payment of moneys out of such bank accounts, in pursuance of general authorization by the public administrator to the bank in which the same are deposited, as long as such authorization remains in effect;

(4) Entering the safe deposit box of any person or decedent whose estate is in the charge of the public administrator and any safe deposit box maintained by the public administrator for the safekeeping of assets in his or her charge, as a deputy of the public administrator, pursuant to general authorization given by the public administrator to the bank or safe deposit company in charge of any such safe deposit box, as long as such authorization as a deputy remains in effect, and withdrawing therefrom and depositing therein such assets as may be determined by the public administrator. The bank or safe deposit company shall not be charged with notice or knowledge or any limitation of authority of the authorized deputy, unless specially notified in writing thereof by the public administrator, and may allow the deputy access to the safe deposit box, in the absence of notice, to the full extent allowable to the public administrator in person.

4. The enumeration of the foregoing powers shall not operate as an exclusion of any powers not specifically conferred. No authorized deputy shall exercise any power, other than as prescribed in this section, which shall require the exercise of a discretion enjoined by law to be exercised personally by the executor, administrator, personal representative, guardian, or conservator in charge of the estate to which the discretionary power refers.

5. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsections 3 and 4 of this section to the contrary, a public administrator in a county which is not a county of the first classification may delegate to any deputy appointed by the public administrator any of the duties of the public administrator enumerated in section 473.743, and sections 475.120 and 475.130. Such public administrator may also delegate to a deputy who is a licensed attorney the authority to execute inventories, settlements, surety bonds, pleadings, and other documents filed in any court in the name of the public administrator, and the same shall have the force and effect as if executed by the public administrator.

(L. 1988 H.B. 1371, A.L. 2005 H.B. 58 merged with S.B. 210)



Public administrator and sureties liable for acts of deputies.

473.773. The public administrator and the sureties upon his bond as public administrator and the sureties on any other bonds given specially for separate estates, shall be liable for any loss occasioned by any wrongful, illegal or negligent act or omission of any deputy acting under such authority or by color of his authority as such deputy, to the same extent and in the same manner as if the wrongful, illegal or negligent act or omission had been committed, permitted or suffered by the public administrator personally.

(L. 1957 p. 869 3)



Staff to be deemed county employees--full-time staff may be provided for certain administrators.

473.775. 1. Any full-time staff of any public administrator's office employed on or after January 1, 2001, who is not an employee of the county for purposes of hiring, retirement, benefits and other laws applicable to county employees shall be deemed an employee after January 1, 2001. Any full-time staff of the office of the public administrator for the city of St. Louis on or after January 1, 2001, shall be considered an employee of the city of St. Louis for purposes of hiring, retirement, benefits and other laws applicable to the city of St. Louis employees.

2. Each public administrator with fifty or more cases may be provided with full-time staff paid for by the county or for St. Louis City, paid for by the city of St. Louis.

(L. 2000 S.B. 542 1)



Independent administration, when.

473.780. 1. When a will admitted to probate authorizes or directs independent administration, either by specific reference to this section or by language providing that the estate be administered without adjudication, order or direction of the court, the letters testamentary shall provide that the personal representative therein named may administer the estate independently. When a will admitted to probate prohibits independent administration, expressly or by language manifesting intent that the estate be administered under court supervision, the directions of the will shall be observed.

2. When all of the heirs interested in an intestate estate or all of the devisees interested in a testate estate, or all of the heirs and devisees interested in a partially intestate estate, consent to independent administration, and the will does not prohibit it, the letters testamentary or of administration shall provide that the personal representative therein named may administer the estate independently.

3. When one or more of the heirs or devisees whose consent to independent administration is required by subsection 2 is or are under disability, and all of the other heirs or devisees whose consent is required consent to independent administration, the court may grant letters testamentary or of administration which provide that the personal representative therein named may administer the estate independently. The court shall not appoint a guardian ad litem for the purpose of consent to or consideration of an application for independent administration.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Notice of independent administration, contents.

473.783. After letters testamentary or of administration authorizing independent administration of an estate are issued, the notice required by section 473.033 shall contain a paragraph in substantially the following form:

"The personal representative may administer the estate independently, without adjudication, order, or direction of the probate division of the circuit court, unless a petition for supervised administration is made to and granted by the court."

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Duties of personal representative in independent administration--attorney required, when.

473.787. 1. While letters testamentary or of administration authorizing independent administration of the estate are in force, the personal representative therein named is an independent personal representative and his administration of the estate is an independent administration, and all actions taken on or after August 28, 1996, shall be in accordance with the provisions of the Missouri prudent investor act, sections 469.900 to 469.913.

2. An independent personal representative shall proceed expeditiously with the settlement and distribution of the estate in accordance with the applicable provisions of this chapter and, except as otherwise specified by the provisions of sections 473.780 to 473.843, shall do so without adjudication, order, or direction of the court, but he may invoke the jurisdiction of the court, in proceedings authorized by this code, to resolve questions concerning the estate or its administration or distribution.

3. Unless he is a member in good standing of the Missouri bar, an independent personal representative, because he owes a fiduciary duty to the persons interested in the estate, shall secure the advice and services of an attorney, who is not a salaried employee of the personal representative, on legal questions arising in connection with:

(1) The application for and issuance of letters testamentary or of administration;

(2) The collection, investment and preservation of assets;

(3) The inventory;

(4) The allowance, disallowance, compromise and payment of claims;

(5) The making of tax returns;

(6) The transfer and encumbrance of property of the estate;

(7) The interpretation of the will and of the intestacy laws;

(8) The scheme and making of distribution; and

(9) The closing of the estate.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1996 H.B. 1432, A.L. 2006 S.B. 892)



Inventory of property by independent personal representative.

473.793. Within thirty days after his appointment, an independent personal representative, who is not a special administrator or a successor to another representative who has previously discharged this duty, shall prepare and file in the court an inventory of property owned by the decedent at the time of his death, listing it with reasonable detail, and indicating as to each listed item, its fair market value as of the date of the decedent's death, and the type and amount of any encumbrance that may exist with reference to any item. The independent personal representative shall send a copy of the inventory to interested persons who request it.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Independent personal representative may employ appraisers, attorney, accountant or tax specialist.

473.797. 1. An independent personal representative may employ a qualified and disinterested appraiser to assist him in ascertaining the fair market value as of the date of the decedent's death of any asset the value of which may be subject to reasonable doubt. Different persons may be employed to appraise different kinds of assets included in the estate. The name and address of any appraiser shall be indicated on the inventory with the item or items he appraised.

2. An independent personal representative may employ an attorney, certified public accountant or tax specialist holding a valid permit to practice before the U. S. Treasury Department to assist him in the preparation of any estate tax return or any federal and state income tax returns and such person shall be allowed out of the estate reasonable compensation for such services. An independent personal representative may also employ independent accountants to assist him in filing federal and state income tax returns or establishing records of account and reporting on financial results in those estates requiring this service and such person shall be allowed out of the estate reasonable compensation for such service.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Supplementary inventory, when required--copies to interested persons.

473.800. If any property of substantial value not included in the original inventory comes to the knowledge of an independent personal representative, or if the independent personal representative learns that the value or description indicated in the original inventory for any item is erroneous or misleading, he shall make a supplementary inventory or appraisement showing the market value as of the date of the decedent's death of the new item or the revised market value or descriptions, and the appraisers or other data relied upon, if any, and file it with the court. The independent personal representative shall send a copy of any supplementary inventory to interested persons at their request.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1983 H.B. 369)



Independent personal representative's right to decedent's property--exceptions--duties.

473.803. Except as otherwise provided by a decedent's will, every independent personal representative has a right to, and shall take possession or control of, the decedent's property, except that any real property or tangible personal property may be left with or surrendered to the person presumptively entitled thereto unless or until, in the judgment of the independent personal representative, possession of the property by him will be necessary for purposes of administration. The independent personal representative shall pay taxes on, and take all steps reasonably necessary for the management, protection, and preservation of, the estate in his possession. He may maintain an action to recover possession of property or to determine the title thereto.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Powers and duties of independent personal representative.

473.810. Except as restricted or otherwise provided by the will, an independent personal representative, acting reasonably for the benefit of the interested persons, may properly:

(1) Retain assets owned by the decedent pending distribution or liquidation, including those in which the representative is personally interested or which are otherwise improper for trust investment;

(2) Receive assets from fiduciaries or other sources;

(3) Perform, compromise, or refuse performance of the decedent's contracts that continue as obligations of the estate, as he may determine under the circumstances. In performing enforceable contracts by the decedent to convey or lease land, the independent personal representative, among other possible courses of action, may do either of the following:

(a) Execute and deliver a deed of conveyance for cash payment of all sums remaining due or for the purchaser's note for the sum remaining due secured by a mortgage or deed of trust on the land;

(b) Deliver a deed in escrow with directions that the proceeds, when paid in accordance with the escrow agreement, be paid to the successors of the decedent, as designated in the escrow agreement;

(4) If funds are not needed to meet debts and expenses currently payable and are not immediately distributable, deposit or invest liquid assets of the estate, including moneys received from the sale of other assets, in federally insured interest-bearing accounts, readily marketable secured loan arrangements, or other prudent investments which would be reasonable for use by trustees generally;

(5) Make ordinary repairs to buildings or other structures;

(6) Vote stocks or other securities in person or by general or limited proxy;

(7) Pay calls, assessments, and other sums chargeable or accruing against or on account of securities, unless barred by the provisions relating to claims;

(8) Hold a security in the name of a nominee, or in other form, without disclosure of the interest of the estate; but the independent personal representative is liable for any act of the nominee in connection with the security so held;

(9) Insure the assets of the estate against damage, loss, and liability, and himself against liability as to third persons;

(10) Effect a fair and reasonable compromise with any debtor or obligor, or extend, renew, or in any manner modify the terms of an obligation owing to the estate. If the independent personal representative holds a mortgage, pledge, or other lien upon property of another person, he may, in lieu of foreclosure, accept a conveyance or transfer of encumbered assets from the owner thereof in satisfaction of the indebtedness secured by lien;

(11) Pay taxes, assessments, compensation of the independent personal representative, and other expenses incident to the administration of the estate;

(12) Sell or exercise stock subscription or conversion rights; consent, directly or through a committee or other agent, to the reorganization, consolidation, merger, dissolution, or liquidation of a corporation or other business enterprise;

(13) Allocate items of income or expense to either estate income or principal, as permitted or provided by law;

(14) Employ persons, including attorneys, auditors, investment advisors, or agents, to advise or assist the independent personal representative in the performance of his administrative duties; act without independent investigation upon their recommendations; and instead of acting personally, employ one or more agents to perform any act of administration, whether or not discretionary;

(15) Prosecute or defend claims, or proceedings in any jurisdiction for the protection of the estate and of the independent personal representative in the performance of his duties;

(16) Sell, mortgage, or lease any real or personal property of the estate or any interest therein for cash, credit, or for part cash and part credit, and with or without security for unpaid balances;

(17) Continue any unincorporated business or venture in which the decedent was engaged at the time of his death (a) in the same business form for a period of not more than four months from the date of appointment of a general independent personal representative, if continuation is a reasonable means of preserving the value of the business including good will; (b) in the same business form for any additional period of time that may be approved by order of the court in a proceeding to which the persons interested in the estate are parties; or (c) throughout the period of administration if the business is incorporated by the independent personal representative and if none of the probable distributees of the business who are competent adults object to its incorporation and retention in the estate;

(18) Incorporate any business or venture in which the decedent was engaged at the time of his death;

(19) Provide for exoneration of the independent personal representative from personal liability in any contract entered into on behalf of the estate;

(20) Satisfy and settle claims, and distribute the estate, as provided in this code.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81

CROSS REFERENCE:

Multinational banks, securities and obligations of, investment in, when, 409.950



Dealing in good faith for value with independent representative protected--no duty to inquire--liability of independent personal representative.

473.811. 1. A person who in good faith deals with an independent personal representative for value is protected as if the independent personal representative properly exercised his power. The fact that a person knowingly deals with an independent personal representative does not require the person to inquire into the existence of a power or the propriety of its exercise.

2. No conveyance or transfer by the independent personal representative to a bona fide purchaser for a valuable consideration shall be set aside on the ground that the independent personal representative was not acting reasonably for the benefit of interested persons. Interested persons may recover from the independent personal representative any damages occasioned by failure of the independent personal representative to act reasonably for the benefit of interested persons.

(L. 1983 H.B. 369)



Liability of personal representative.

473.820. 1. Unless otherwise provided in the contract, a personal representative is not individually liable on a contract properly entered into in his fiduciary capacity in the course of administration of the estate, unless he fails to reveal his representative capacity and identify the estate in the contract.

2. A personal representative is individually liable for obligations arising from ownership or control of the estate or for torts committed in the course of administration of the estate only if he is personally at fault.

3. Claims based on contracts entered into by a personal representative in his fiduciary capacity, on obligations arising from ownership or control of the estate, or on torts committed in the course of estate administration may be asserted against the estate by proceeding against the personal representative in his fiduciary capacity, whether or not the personal representative is individually liable therefor.

4. Issues of liability as between the estate and the personal representative individually may be determined in a proceeding for accounting, surcharge or indemnification, or other appropriate proceeding.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Compensation of independent personal representative and attorney.

473.823. 1. An independent personal representative is entitled to reasonable compensation for his services. The statutory schedule of compensation prescribed in section 473.153 shall be considered a minimum fee for services rendered. An independent personal representative may renounce his right to all or any part of the compensation. A written renunciation of fee may be filed with the court.

2. If the will provides for compensation of the independent personal representative, and there is no contract with the decedent regarding compensation, he may renounce the provisions before qualifying only if he also renounces the right to administer independently under subsection 1 of section 473.780. In the event of such renunciation, the administration shall be supervised unless independent administration is authorized under subsection 2 or 3 of section 473.780.

3. An independent personal representative's attorney shall be entitled to reasonable compensation for his services, but in no event shall the compensation of the independent personal representative or his attorney be in excess of the minimum prescribed by section 473.153, without authorization by the court. The schedule contained in such section shall be prima facie evidence of the reasonableness of the fees charged.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1981 S.B. 117, A.L. 1996 S.B. 494)

Effective 5-23-96



Review of compensation of independent personal representative and of employment and compensation of others, when--refunds, when.

473.827. On petition of an interested person, and after notice to all interested persons, the propriety of employment of any person by an independent personal representative, including any attorney, auditor, appraiser, investment advisor, or other specialized agent or assistant, the reasonableness of the compensation of any person so employed, or the reasonableness of the compensation determined by the independent personal representative for his own services may be reviewed by the court. Any person who has received excessive compensation from an estate for services rendered may be ordered to make appropriate refunds.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Court may restrain personal representative, when--petition--hearing--procedure.

473.830. 1. On petition of any person who appears to have an interest in the estate, the court, by temporary ex parte order, may restrain a personal representative from performing specified acts of administration, disbursement, or distribution, or from exercising any powers or discharging any duties of his office, or may make any other order to secure proper performance of his duty, if it appears to the court that the personal representative otherwise may take some action which would jeopardize unreasonably the interest of the applicant or of some other interested person. Persons with whom the personal representative may transact business may be made parties.

2. The matter shall be set for hearing within ten days unless the parties otherwise agree. Notice, as the court directs, shall be given to the personal representative and his attorney of record, if any, and to any other parties named defendant in the petition.

3. Procedure shall be in accordance with this code and the supreme court rule relating to injunctions.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Revocation of independent administration, when--petition--hearing--orders of court.

473.833. 1. An independent personal representative, or any interested person, may, at any time, file a petition to revoke the provisions of letters testamentary or of administration authorizing independent administration. The petitioner shall serve a copy of such petition on each interested person at the time the petition is filed with the court.

2. Upon the filing of such petition, the court shall determine the extent of petitioner's interest in the estate and, if it shall find that such interest is more than nominal, the court shall order a hearing on the petition, directing notice thereof to be given to all interested persons, and may specify the time within which such interested persons shall file answers to such petition. If, upon motion of any interested person, the court finds that the petitioner's interest is nominal, the court may dismiss the petition.

3. The court may enter such interlocutory orders as it deems necessary to protect the assets of the estate pending a full hearing, or to determine whether or not the independent personal representative has properly administered the estate.

4. After hearing on the petition, the court may enter an order directing supervised administration, or the court may deny the petition conditioned upon the performance of some act by the independent personal representative, or the court may grant such other relief as the court deems appropriate under the circumstances. If the court finds that the actions of the independent personal representative have resulted in loss to the estate, the court may, in addition to ordering supervised administration, remove the personal representative and enter a judgment against him and his sureties, if any, in accordance with the provisions of section 473.207.

5. After an order revoking authorization for independent administration has been entered, the administration of the estate shall proceed under the provisions of this chapter other than sections 473.780 to 473.843.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

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Settlement of estate, when--notice--distribution.

473.837. An independent personal representative may petition for an order of complete settlement of the estate. After notice is given pursuant to section 473.840 to all interested persons and hearing, the court may enter an order or orders, on appropriate conditions, determining the persons entitled to distribution of the estate, and, as circumstances require, approving settlement and directing or approving distribution of the estate and discharging the independent personal representative from further claim or demand of any interested person.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1982 S.B. 700 Revision)



Completion of administration--discharge of independent personal representative, when--procedures--objections, time limitation, procedure.

473.840. 1. Unless prohibited by order of the court, an independent personal representative may complete administration and be discharged in the manner prescribed by this section after six months and ten days from the date of the first published notice of letters testamentary or of administration.

2. To complete administration and be discharged in this manner the independent personal representative shall file in the court a document called a statement of account which shall include:

(1) A statement that notice was given under sections 473.033 and 473.783 and that first publication as required by section 473.783 occurred more than six months before the filing of the statement of account;

(2) A complete accounting, omitting vouchers, of all receipts and disbursements of the probate assets by the personal representative;

(3) A statement that all claims, expenses of administration and taxes have been paid in full, or if not paid, what items have not been paid in full and why;

(4) A statement that, unless objection to the proposed distribution is filed in court within twenty days after the filing of the statement of account, the independent personal representative will distribute probate assets in accordance with a schedule of proposed distribution included in the statement of account;

(5) A schedule of proposed distribution of probate assets; and

(6) A statement that notice was given in the manner provided by subdivision (2) of subsection 2 of section 472.100 at least twenty-nine days prior to the filing of the statement of account which notice stated that: (a) the independent personal representative would file the statement of account on a date certain or as continued by the court, and (b) objections to the schedule of proposed distribution shall be filed with the court within twenty days after the filing of the statement of account. The notice shall be published once a week for four consecutive weeks, the last publication to be at least seven days prior to the date specified in the notice for filing of the statement of account.

3. Copies of the statement of account, omitting vouchers, copies of the original and any supplementary and corrected inventories and all settlements filed in the court, and a notice, shall be mailed together by ordinary mail before they are filed in the court to each interested party. The notice shall state that the statement of account will be filed in the court on a date stated in the notice. Such notice shall further state that if no objection is filed in the court within twenty days after the filing of the statement of account, the independent personal representative will distribute in accordance with the schedule of proposed distribution contained in the statement of account. The notice shall further state that if no proceeding is commenced in the court within six months after the filing of the statement of account, the independent personal representative is discharged from further claim or demand by an interested party.

4. If no objection is filed within such twenty days after filing, the court shall not have any duty to audit or make inquiry into such statement of accounts, and the personal representative shall make distribution in accordance with the proposed schedule as filed. If an objection is filed within twenty days, the court shall conduct a hearing on such objections and, if necessary shall require vouchers and audit the statement of account, and thereafter determine and order proper distribution and make an order discharging the representative.

5. Proof of the mailing of the notice and of the copies of the statement of account, inventories and settlements shall be filed in the court with the statement of account, and such proof shall be by a statement signed by the independent personal representative listing the persons to whom and addresses to which mailing was made and the date of mailing.

6. If no proceeding involving the independent personal representative is filed in the court within six months after the statement of account is filed, the representative is discharged from further claim or demand by any interested party. The court shall not make any order of discharge. If proceedings are filed within six months after the statement of account is filed, the liability, if any, of the representative, to interested parties, shall be determined by the court, and upon satisfaction of any such liability the court shall make an order discharging the representative.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637, A.L. 1982 S.B. 700 Revision, A.L. 1983 H.B. 369, A.L. 1996 S.B. 494)

Effective 5-23-96



Time for complete settlement or filing of statement of account--extension.

473.843. Unless the time is extended by the court, an independent personal representative shall petition for an order of complete settlement under section 473.837, or file a statement of account under section 473.840, within one year after the original appointment of an independent personal representative of the estate. If he fails to do so, the court shall, upon application of any person interested in the estate, or upon its own motion, order the personal representative to close the estate or apply for an extension of time in which to do so.

(L. 1980 S.B. 637)

Effective 1-1-81



Distribution in kind--deeds, evidentiary effect--improper distribution, liability of distributee, exceptions.

473.844. 1. If distribution in kind is made, the independent personal representative shall execute an instrument or deed of distribution assigning, transferring or releasing the assets to the distributee as evidence of the title of the distributee to the property.

2. Proof that a distributee has received an instrument or deed of distribution of assets in kind, or payment in distribution, from an independent personal representative, is conclusive evidence that the distributee has succeeded to the interest of the estate in the distributed assets, as against all persons interested in the estate, except that the independent personal representative may recover the assets or their value if the distribution was improper.

3. Unless the distribution or payment no longer can be questioned because of adjudication, estoppel, or limitation, a distributee of property improperly distributed or paid, or a claimant who was improperly paid, is liable to return the property improperly received and its income since distribution if he has the property. If he does not have the property, then he is liable to return the value as of the date of disposition of the property improperly received and its income and gain received by him.

(L. 1983 H.B. 369)



Interest of purchaser for value from, or lender to, distributee of property protected.

473.845. If property distributed in kind or a security interest therein is acquired for value by a purchaser from or lender to a distributee who has received an instrument or deed of distribution from the independent personal representative, or is so acquired by a purchaser from or lender to a transferee from such distributee, the purchaser or lender takes title free of rights of any interested person in the estate and incurs no personal liability to the estate, or to any interested person, whether or not the distribution was proper or supported by court order or the authority of the independent personal representative was terminated before execution of the instrument or deed. This section protects a purchaser from or lender to a distributee who, as independent personal representative, has executed a deed of distribution to himself, as well as a purchaser from or lender to any other distributee or his transferee. To be protected under this provision, a purchaser or lender need not inquire whether an independent personal representative acted properly in making the distribution in kind, even if the independent personal representative and the distributee are the same person, or whether the authority of the independent personal representative had terminated before the distribution.

(L. 1983 H.B. 369)

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