Sometimes a piece of paper can represent bad news. Perhaps it’s a pink slip, a note telling a child’s parents that he or she has detention, or in the case of a fiduciary, you receive what’s known as the Notice of Deficiency form. When getting the Notice of Deficiency, it’s never a good thing because it means you have not been able to uphold your duties as a fiduciary. This is a State Court Administrative Office form, which can be seen by clicking here.

Most of these State Court Administrative Office forms are associated with Michigan Court Rules and statutes. The Notice of Deficiency form is no different.

The Notice of Deficiency form is associated with MCR 5.203, which states:

Except in the instance of a personal representative who fails to timely comply with the requirements of MCL 700.3951(1), if it appears to the court that the fiduciary is not properly administering the estate, the court shall proceed as follows:

(A) Notice of Deficiency. The court must notify the fiduciary, the attorney for the fiduciary, if any, and each of the sureties for the fiduciary of the nature of the deficiency, together with a notice to correct the deficiency within 28 days, or, in the alternative, to appear before the court or an officer designated by it at a time specified within 28 days for a conference concerning the deficiency. Service is complete on mailing to the last known address of the fiduciary.

(B) Conference, Memorandum. If a conference is held, the court must prepare a written memorandum setting forth the date of the conference, the persons present, and any steps required to be taken to correct the deficiency. The steps must be taken within the time set by the court but not to exceed 28 days from the date of the conference. A copy of the memorandum must be given to those present at the conference and, if the fiduciary is not present at the conference, mailed to the fiduciary at the last known address.

(C) Extension of Time. For good cause, the court may extend the time for performance of required duties for a further reasonable period or periods, but any extended period may not exceed 28 days and shall only be extended to a day certain. The total period as extended may not exceed 56 days.

(D) Suspension of Fiduciary, Appointment of Special Fiduciary. If the fiduciary fails to perform the duties required within the time allowed, the court may do any of the following: suspend the powers of the dilatory fiduciary, appoint a special fiduciary, and close the estate administration. If the court suspends the powers of the dilatory fiduciary or closes the estate administration, the court must notify the dilatory fiduciary, the attorney of record for the dilatory fiduciary, the sureties on any bond of the dilatory fiduciary that has been filed, any financial institution listed on the most recent inventory or account where the fiduciary has deposited funds, any currently serving guardian ad litem, and the interested persons at their addresses shown in the court file. This rule does not preclude contempt proceedings as provided by law.

(E) Reports on the Status of Estates. The chief judge of each probate court must file with the state court administrator, on forms provided by the state court administrative office, any reports on the status of estates required by the state court administrator.

To help you understand this form better, Darren Findling of The Probate Pro covers everything you’ll need to know in this video.

Like Darren, we’re ready to help you understand all things related to probate. So, if you have any probate related questions, don’t hesitate to give The Probate Pro a call today at (833) PROBATE. Our legal family is ready to help you.