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    By: Ron Ponzoli, Chair, Religious Organizations Practice Group 

    WEST PALM BEACH, FL – February 18, 2020 – In Florida, a claim against an estate must be brought: on or before that later of the date that is 3 months after the time of the first publication of the notice to creditors or, as to any creditor required to be served with a copy of the notice to creditors, 30 days after the date of service on the creditor.

    Claims by religious organizations against an estate could include claims for funeral or burial expenses and claims for personal property in the possession of the personal representative.  Therefore, it is important that religious organizations pay close attention to the deadlines to file claims against an estate.

    In a recent opinion, a Florida appellate court denied a creditor a claim against an estate because the creditor filed the claim one day too late. The court found that the first day for calculating the 3 months for filing a claim against the estate started on the date of the first publication of the notice to creditors, and not the day after the first publication. The claimant mistakenly believed the 3 months ran from the day after the first publication. As this opinion evidences, religious organizations asserting a claim against an estate are wise to file the claim long before the deadline expires, so as to avoid any misapplication of the deadline.

    Remain informed of legal issues affecting all manners of religious organizations by visiting the Religious Organizations Law Blog.


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