Amendments to Orphans’ Court Rules

The Supreme Court has entered an order adopting amendments to Pennsylvania Orphans’ Court Rules as well as changes to some of the forms used by the Orphans’ Court and Register of Wills. The report of the Orphans’ Court Procedural Rules Committee explaining the changes has also been published. “Order Amendment Rules 1.7, 1.8, 2.1, 2.5, 2.7, 3.5, 3.7, 4.3, 4.6, 5.1, 5.3, 5.4, 7.1, 10.1, 10.5, and the Index of the Appendix of the Pennsylvania Orphans’ Court Rules, and Rescinding and Replacing Forms OC-1 Through OC-5 and RW-03 Through RW-10,” No. 808 Supreme Court Rules Doc. (10/31/2019), 49 Pa.B. 6804 (11/16/2019).

Many of the changes are typographical, grammatical, or otherwise minor, but the following changes may be of interest:

  • An explanatory comment was added to Rule 1.7 to clarify that the rule does not apply to a withdrawal of counsel before the Register of Wills, which should be governed by local rule or the discretion of the Register.
  • Rule 2.5 was amended to require notice of the filing of an account to a co-fiduciary who does not join in the account, and to allow a party residing outside of the United States 60 days (not 20 days) within which to file objections.
  • Rule 4.3 was amended to require a certificate of service for all legal papers filed under that rule.
  • The term “outright beneficiary” was changed to “beneficiary” in the notice requirements of Rule 10.5(a)(1), and (a)(8) was amended to require notice to the beneficiaries of an estate or trust if the personal representative is a fiduciary of the estate or trust.
  • Forms were revised to add requests for attachments, updating fill-in functions, and revising notarial language.

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