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Alan Stanford Fanger

Alan Fanger’s Answers

29 total

  • Can we Contest the Will and do we need an Attorney?

    My estranged Father died. I found his will leaving everything to his sister. All his documents listed him as single not divorced no children. He was married and divorced wth 5 children. We were in touch off and on throughout the years. I was notif...

    Alan’s Answer

    You certainly have the right to contest the will. However, your own description of your relationship with your father as "estranged" will probably make such a challenge difficult. Generally in this instance a will can be challenged on two grounds: that the person making the will lacked the mental capacity to do so, or that the person was subject to "undue influence" by the person who benefitted from the will (or someone married to or a domestic partner of the person who benefitted). There also deadlines and procedures that must be complied with; failure to adhere to these deadlines and procedures will result in the forefeiture of your rights. See www.lawfang.com and check out my blog (which has posts on various issues relating to will contests and undue influence). Please also read my article on avvo.con on challenging a will in Massachusetts.

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  • I am estranged from my family and was in a will from my grandparents.They have died and I think the family

    denied knowing my whereabouts even thougthey do. I found my grandmothers obit but they never tried to contact me . I believe they have stolen my inherratence.What can I do?

    Alan’s Answer

    Under Massachusetts law, the will must be filed within 30 days of death in the probate court in the county where your grandmother last lived. If you don't know where she last lived, there are private investigators who, for a small fee, can find the last known address within a day or two. There are significant liabilities associated with administering the will without giving you your distribution and persons administering estates incorrectly, so you should resist thinking you were not paid your share. For more details go to www.lawfang.com and click on my blog.

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  • What do I do if someone sent me a 1099, but I never worked for them in 2008?

    I stopped working for someone in December of 2007. I recently received a 1099 from them for 2008, yet I never did any work for them in 2008. I asked to see a copy of the front and back of the check they supposedly wrote to me, but they have fail...

    Alan’s Answer

    There is a federal law that provides a civil penalty of $5,000 or your actual loss (whichever is greater) plus attorney's fees for false information reporting to the IRS. I can provide the reference to the statute if you need it.

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  • I bought a preowned car that broke after 2 wks

    i bought a used honda passport..after a wk i noticed it was making a weird noise..brought it back to the dealer ..they had it for 2 wks gave me back my car with 300+ miles put on it but the noise was gone..i drove it for a couple of wks and on my ...

    Alan’s Answer

    Based on the facts as you have related them to me (most notably, the fact that the dealer has had possession of the vehicle for the amount of time you so state), you are entitled to substantial relief under the Used Car Lemon Law. The relief would include a refund of the down payment, any and all interest and finance charges, destination charges, sales tax and any excise tax you may have paid to date. From this amount there is deducted a usage charge, which is a function of the mileage you have driven on the vehicle. You must make a written demand on the dealer to preserve and advance these rights, as well as to preserve your right to attorney's fees (under what is known as Chapter 93A, the Consumer Protection Act), in the event that the dealer does not refund these monies to you. Please contact my office if you wish to discuss your rights in further detail.

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  • Adding a trustee to an irrevocable trust

    My mother created an irrevocable trust years ago and named me the trustee. At the time, my sister was not involved in our family and my mother chose to not to include her in the trust. Now, my mother would like to add my sister and split everyth...

    Alan’s Answer

    The answer depends on the terms of the trust. If the trust provides that trustees may be added, then the trust may be amended. If it does not provide for additional trustees, then it cannot be amended. Your concern, however, may be more directed to who the beneficiaries of the trust are, and if the trust is indeed irrevocable, that is something that cannot be amended.

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  • How much notice do I need to give a tenant that a lease will not be renewed and can I show the home while the lease is active?

    I presently rent my home out to an individual on a one year lease. I am dissatisfied with this tenant and will not be renewing his lease. How much notice do I need to give him that I will be terminating him as a renter and how soon can I arrange ...

    Alan’s Answer

    The existence of the lease for a one-year term negates any need for you to provide notice to the tenant. As of the last day of the lease, the tenancy terminates by operation of law. If the tenant "holds over" after the expiration of the lease, you may commence eviction proceedings without the need for a notice to terminate the tenancy. The lease probably has language governing your right to show the apartment. In the absence of any such language, the law would provide that showings of the apartment can only occur with the tenant's consent, but that such consent may not be unreasonably withheld.

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  • How do you sue someone from out of state?

    I gave 5,000 dollars to a friend from out of state who promised to utilize the money for a business investment which he never did...the agreement was that he would pay it back if things didn't work out...he has not paid me one dime but continues ...

    Alan’s Answer

    First of all, before suing this friend you should assure yourself that the courts here in Massachusetts can assert authority--or what is known in legalese as "jurisdiction"--over him. Courts have jurisdiction over persons from out of state only when they have had certain "minimum contacts" with Massachusetts. The question of whether someone has had minimum contacts is determined by, among other things, the degree to which the person was in the state physically, took advantage of the laws of this state to do business, used phone, e-mail, etc. to communicate with persons in this state. Although I don't know all of the facts pertaining to your relationship with this person, if all you did was to send a check to the person based on his verbal representations, that would not be enough to constitute minimum contacts, and any judgment you might obtain here in Massachusetts would likely not be honored by the state in which you would have to enforce that judgment. You might consider as an alternative hiring an attorney in the state where the defendant lives, and bringing suit in that state.

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  • Water Bill

    we brought a brand new house 1 year ago and at the closing the atty for the bank didn't get the final water bill reading which in turn the builder is refusing to pay and saying he didn't use the water. the bill is $4600.00 dollars and is now (09)...

    Alan’s Answer

    Thanks for your question. I am assuming that you and the builder entered into a written purchase and sale agreement. That agreement typically has a clause that says that amounts for taxes and water, if not known, are "equitably apportioned" among the parties based on their ownership. This is another way of saying that if there was a written P&S then I suspect the builder is responsible for that bill. The closing attorney may also have liability depending on the facts. I suggest that you engage an attorney to strongly advance your position. Please feel free to contact me if you wish to discuss this further.

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  • Tenants' rightsh

    My lanlord has left phone messages stating that I must keep my windows closed during the winter months. They insist that the thermostat be kept at a high temp in order to avoid pipes freezing, hence it is very uncomfortable. They pay for the heat,...

    Alan’s Answer

    You are entitled to what is known as the "quiet enjoyment" of your apartment. This means that if you want to keep the windows open to keep the temperature down, you may do so. (Hopefully you have saved the landlord's messages). There is nothing barring the landlord from observing that your windows are open. However, the landlord may not insist that you close them as long as your keeping them open does not affect the pipes. This seems like something that should be able to be worked out with your landlord. However, the situation may call for the intervention of an attorney on your behalf. Feel free to contact me if you wish to speak further concerning this matter.

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  • Can we sue our neighbor for fallen trees that damaged our house, neighbor failed to cut them down

    My house was severely damaged by two falling trees inthe last ice storm we experianced, my wife and I were in the house when both trees hit. I had spoken to the owner of the trees some time ago about removing them but he did not agree they should ...

    Alan’s Answer

    In the first instance, if you had howeowners insurance coverage as of the date of the incident, that insurance should provide coverage for the loss. If you did not have such coverage, then you could bring suit against the neighbor. The critical question in such a case would be whether your neighbor should have known that the trees posed a risk of damage to your house. This would be determined, among other things, by their size, distance from your house, configuration, etc. A case like this is typically handled on a contingency fee; in other words, the attorney does not earn a fee unless he/she secures a recovery on your behalf.

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