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10/19/87 In Re Estate of William A. Murphy

October 19, 1987

IN RE ESTATE OF WILLIAM A. MURPHY, A/K/A WILLARD MURPHY, A


APPELLATE COURT OF ILLINOIS, FIFTH DISTRICT

Disabled Person (Glendola Baker, Objector-Appellant, v.

George Murphy, Guardian of the Estate of William A. Murphy,

a/k/a Willard Murphy, a Disabled Person,

Guardian-Appellee)

514 N.E.2d 1225, 162 Ill. App. 3d 222, 113 Ill. Dec. 214 1987.IL.1557

Appeal from the Circuit Court of Gallatin County; the Hon. Henry Lewis, Judge, presiding.

APPELLATE Judges:

PRESIDING JUSTICE KARNS delivered the opinion of the court. HARRISON and WELCH, JJ., concur.

DECISION OF THE COURT DELIVERED BY THE HONORABLE JUDGE KARNS

Glendola Baker, objector-appellant, appeals from the order of the circuit court of Gallatin County overruling her objections to the final report and accounting filed by George Murphy, guardian-appellee, upon the death of the ward, William A. Murphy, a/k/a Willard Murphy.

In September of 1981, George Murphy, his brother and two sisters jointly filed a petition for guardianship of their father Willard Murphy, an alleged disabled adult. The court found Willard Murphy to be a disabled adult and appointed George as plenary guardian. As part of his duties as plenary guardian, George filed with the court an initial inventory of the ward's estate. This inventory revealed that the ward owned 120 acres of farmland in Gallatin County. On November 25, 1981, the ward conveyed to his four children the 120 acres of farmland while reserving a life estate for himself. At the same time, the ward executed a new will in favor of the same four children, thereby revoking an earlier will which left his entire estate to Glendola Baker, his stepdaughter.

In August of 1984, Willard Murphy died. George, as plenary guardian, filed a final report and accounting of the estate. This report did not include or in any way account for the 120 acres of farmland. Glendola filed objections to the report based on this fact. George filed a verified answer stating that the farmland had been conveyed by the ward to his children in 1981. After a hearing on the matter, the trial court overruled the objections and approved and confirmed the final report as filed.

Glendola argues on appeal the trial court erred in overruling her objections and in approving the final report. She believes George's explanation that the ward's property was conveyed away during the guardianship does not constitute a proper accounting and that he should either recover the farm for the ward's estate or reimburse the estate for the value of the property dissipated during his office.

A guardian has a duty at the end of his office to file a final report and to properly account for his ward's estate. (See Bennett v. Bennett (1960), 27 Ill. App. 2d 24, 34, 169 N.E.2d 172, 176; Ill. Rev. Stat. 1985, ch. 110 1/2, par. 24-11.) When objections to this final report are made, the guardian has the burden to prove that the items objected to are just and proper. (See Nonnast v. Northern Trust Co. (1940), 374 Ill. 248, 259, 29 N.E.2d 251, 258; In re Estate of Roth (1974), 24 Ill. App. 3d 412, 416, 321 N.E.2d 81, 84. See also 1A H. Horner, Probate Practice and Estates sec. 764 (4th ed. 1985).) This does not ...


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