Senior Smart Aleck
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Richmond, Virginia
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Re: Help Finding Maine Statute that provides for an Affidavit of Heirship
The referenced statutes deal with turning over property in reliance on an affidavit and the exception for full inventory accountings by a personal representative of a small estate.
It is now abundantly clear you have a legal title problem. You should consult with a licensed attorney in Maine for guidance. While there are a number of lawyers on this listserv (and an even greater number of wanna be lawyers), lawyers are licensed to practice law in individual, particular states, each of which has different laws.
I would hazard a guess that you are in the position where you are now because you did not consult a lawyer when you "bought" your boat from someone who seemingly had all the answers you wanted to hear, as supplemented by your internet research. You might not have good title as a result of those shortcuts.
In general, an affidavit would not suffice to perfect a bequest or intestate succession of personal property for purposes of transferring it to another. Normally, that requires probate and the appointment of a personal representative/executor/administrator, who is then qualified to administer the estate, and must follow up on receipts and disbursements, as a fiduciary, by reporting to a court-appointed commissioner. Many states have a small estate affidavit, which relieves the personal representative of the estate from making a full accounting.