BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    






                             SENATE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE
                             Senator Noreen Evans, Chair
                              2011-2012 Regular Session


          AB 2683 (Committee on Judiciary)
          As Amended April 23, 2012
          Hearing Date: July 3, 2012
          Fiscal: No
          Urgency: No
          TW   
                    

                                        SUBJECT
                                           
                      Probate matters:  guardianships:  estates

                                      DESCRIPTION  

          This bill would correct a cross-reference relating to 
          inter-court communications regarding guardianship venue.  This 
          bill also would conform creditor notices contained in a notice 
          of hearing on a petition to administer a decedent's estate and 
          the notice of administration of the estate to the statutory 
          estate creditor claim period.

                                      BACKGROUND  

          AB 2683 is the Assembly Committee on Judiciary's omnibus bill.  
          To be considered for inclusion, each provision must be 
          non-controversial and not be so substantive as to be more 
          appropriate for a stand-alone bill.  If a non-controversial 
          provision later becomes controversial, that provision will be 
          removed from the bill.

                                CHANGES TO EXISTING LAW
           
          1.  Existing law  provides statutory communication requirements 
            between a court presiding over the guardianship of a minor in 
            one county and a court in another county presiding over the 
            custody or visitation proceeding of the minor.  (Prob. Code 
            Sec. 2204(b).)
             
            Existing law  , the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and 
            Enforcement Act (UCCJEA), provides statutory communication 
            requirements between courts in different states.  (Fam. Code 
                                                                (more)



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            Sec. 3410.)
             
             This bill  would correct an incorrect cross-reference and 
            provide that the communication requirements established under 
            the UCCJEA apply to communications between a guardianship 
            court and a custody or visitation court.  

          2.     Existing law  authorizes a person to commence proceedings 
            for administration of a decedent's estate by filing a petition 
            with the court for an order determining the date and place of 
            the decedent's death and for either an appointment of a 
            personal representative and/or probate of the decedent's will. 
             (Prob. Code Sec. 8000.)

            Existing law  requires the petitioner to serve and publish a 
            notice of hearing on the petition for administration of a 
            decedent's estate.  (Prob. Code Sec. 8003.)

             Existing law  requires the notice of hearing to include a 
            notice to creditors that the creditor must file a claim with 
            the court and mail a copy to the personal representative 
            appointed by the court within four months from the date of 
            first issuance of letters as provided in Probate Code Section 
            9100 and that the time for filing claims will not expire 
            before four months from the date of the hearing.  (Prob. Code 
            Sec. 8100.)
             
            Existing law  requires the personal representative to give 
            notice of administration of the estate to the known or 
            reasonably ascertainable creditors of the decedent.  (Prob. 
            Code Sec. 9050.)

             Existing law  requires the notice of administration of the 
            estate to include a notice to creditors that, in order for a 
            creditor's claim against the estate to be valid, the creditor 
            must file a claim with the court and mail or deliver a copy to 
            the personal representative within the last to occur of four 
            months after the date letters were issued to the personal 
            representative), or 60 days after the date this notice was 
            mailed to you or, in the case of personal delivery, 60 days 
            after the date this notice was delivered to you, as provided 
            in Probate Code Section 9100.  (Prob. Code Sec. 9052.)
             
            Existing law  provides that a creditor of a decedent's estate 
            must file a claim against the estate before the expiration of 
            the later of the following:
                                                                      



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                 four months after the date letters are first issued to a 
               general personal representative; or 
                 60 days after the date notice of administration is 
               mailed or personally delivered to the creditor.  (Prob. 
               Code Sec. 9100(a).)

            This bill  would clarify the notice to creditors contained in 
            the notice of hearing and notice of administration of the 
            estate by providing that the time for filing and serving a 
            creditor's claim is the later of the following: 
                 four months after the date letters are first issued to a 
               general personal representative; or 
                 60 days after the date notice of administration is 
               mailed or personally delivered, as specified, to the 
               creditor.  

                                        COMMENT
           
          1.  Notice to creditors regarding petitions to administer estates 
            of decedents  

          This bill would resolve time limit conflicts within notices to 
          creditors regarding the administration of a decedent's estate 
          and the corresponding statutory creditor claim period.  Existing 
          law requires a person who has petitioned a court for 
          administration of a decedent's estate to serve a notice of 
          administration of the decedent's estate (NOA) and serve and 
          publish a notice of hearing on the petition for administration 
          of the decedent's estate (NOH).  (Prob. Code Secs. 8003 and 
          9050.)  Probate Code Section 9052 requires the NOA to contain a 
          notice to creditors that the creditor must file a claim with the 
          court and serve the personal representative with the last of 
          either four months after the date letters were issued to the 
          personal representative or 60 days after the date the NOA was 
          delivered to the creditor, as provided in Probate Code Section 
          9100.  Probate Code Section 8100 requires the NOH to contain a 
          notice to creditors that the creditor must file a claim with the 
          court and serve the personal representative within four months 
          from the date of first issuance of letters as provided in 
          Probate Code Section 9100.  (Prob. Code Sec. 8100.)  Probate 
          Code Section 9100 provides that a creditor shall file a claim 
          before the expiration of the later of either four months after 
          the date letters are first issued to a general personal 
          representative or 60 days after the date the NOA is mailed or 
          personally delivered to the creditor. 

                                                                      



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          On December 13, 2011, the Policy Coordination and Liaison 
          Committee and the Probate and Mental Health Advisory Committee 
          of the Judicial Council of California submitted a report to the 
          Judicial Council, which identified a conflict between the 
          statutory creditor claim period provisions in Probate Code 
          Section 9100 and the creditor claim periods provided in the NOH 
          and the NOA.  In order to resolve confusion of creditors 
          regarding the deadline to file a creditor's claim against a 
          decedent's estate, the Judicial Council, the sponsor of this 
          provision, resolved to propose legislation to correct the 
          creditor notices contained in the NOH and the NOA.  

          This bill would conform the NOH and NOA to the statutory 
          creditor claim period and require a notice to creditors, to be 
          provided in both the NOH and the NOA, that the creditor has the 
          later of:  (1) four months from the date of first issuance of 
          letters to a general personal representative, as defined; or (2) 
          60 days from the date of mailing or personal delivery of the 
          NOA.
          
          2.  Inter-court communications relating to guardianship venue  
          
          In August 2010, the Policy Coordination and Liaison Committee 
          (PCLC), Probate and Mental Health Advisory Committee, and the 
          Family and Juvenile Law Advisory Committee of the Judicial 
          Council of California circulated for review proposed legislation 
          for determining venue in guardianship proceedings.  This 
          proposal was subsequently enacted by the Legislature in AB 458 
          (Atkins, Ch. 102, Stats. 2011).

          Among other things, AB 458 established inter-court communication 
          procedures between a court in one county presiding over a 
          guardianship of a minor and a court in another county presiding 
          over a custody or visitation proceeding of the minor.  (Prob. 
          Code Sec. 2204.)  These communication provisions contain an 
          incorrect cross-reference to Family Code Section 3140, the 
          statutory requirement to verify whether a minor child in a 
          custody proceeding has been declared missing.  (See Prob. Code 
          Sec. 2204(b)(4).)  This bill would correct this cross-reference 
          to instead refer to Family Code Section 3410 under the Uniform 
          Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (UCCJEA), which 
          provides statutory communication requirements between courts in 
          different states.


           Support  :  None Known
                                                                      



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           Opposition  :  None Known

                                        HISTORY
           
           Source  :  Judicial Council of California

           Related Pending Legislation  :  None Known

           Prior Legislation  :  AB 458 (Atkins, Ch. 102, Stats. 2011) See 
          Comment 1.

           Prior Vote  :

          Assembly Floor (Ayes 76, Noes 0)
          Assembly Committee on Judiciary (Ayes 10, Noes 0)

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