Funds are supposed to be disbursed BEFORE the estate is officially closed.
What explanation is the attorney giving for delaying the disbursement?
If his explanation does not sound reasonable, then consult an attorney to see about petitioning the probate court to reopen the estate or at least notify the probate court that an unreasonable delay has occurred, to see if perhaps the probate court judge can order things to be speeded up a little bit.
the attorney will not respond to us. i have written twice, asking for an explanation and we (the other heirs & i) have called often. no calls are returned. i have written to the register of wills last week detailing this.
You did the right thing by letting the Register Of Wills know about this situation so perhaps they can keep an eye out for this estate to double-check to see if things are being done properly.
It is very unprofessional of the attorney to not respond to your phone calls to keep you informed about what is going on. In fairness to him, it may take a little while longer (no more than 2 weeks) to get the estate affairs in order before the distribution is made. If you haven't heard from him by phone or by mail within the next 3-4 weeks, then hire your own attorney (or use an inexpensive one from a prepaid legal service) to contact this attorney by mail, as he will be more likely to respond to an official certified letter from an attorney.
You also might need the services of an attorney to officially petition the court to reopen the estate to make the distribution officially recorded.
Thanks. i think we will need an attorney in the end since the last time we heard from the attorney handling the estate was october when he sent the "first & final accounting" and got us to sign waivers to expedite disbursement.