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Jan Matthew Tamanini

Jan Tamanini’s Answers

341 total


  • My exboyfriend and i own a van titled in both names, i have the bill of sale, how can i have possesion of the van?

    I AM THE OWNER, HE IS THE CO-OWNER. I TRIED PA SMALL CLAIMS COURT BUT SHE COULD NOT AWARD ME THE VAN. I PAID FOR THE VAN AND HIS NAME WAS ON FOR INSURANCE PURPOSES ONLY.

    Jan’s Answer

    Have you approached your ex about negotiating a settlement on this vehicle? Did you make all or the majority of payments, for example, or were you mutually responsible for paying for the van in equal shares? Perhaps you can convince your ex to sign off on the title/sign his interest over to you, if the van is in your possession.

    If, however, your ex has possession of the vehicle and you want to get it from him, you'd have to buy out his interest. If you are co-owners and there was no written agreement between you regarding who would have possession of the vehicle were the two of you to separate, the law won't do that for you (as you apparently already discovered at the small claims level).

    Regarding your comment on "insurance purposes" -- was your ex the primary policyholder for the insurance? Did you have prior accidents that would have made insuring the vehicle more costly if your name alone had been on the policy? That consideration would also have a value.

    Bottom line: regardless of your personal relationship (or lack thereof) with your ex, if you want title to the vehicle, whether it's now, or if you want to sell it in the future, you're going to have to work with him to deal with its disposition, sooner or later. Even if the vehicle were to be totalled in an accident, the insurance company wouldn't write a check to either of you alone to pay for the vehicle; you'd both have to sign off. So see what you can do now to get the matter resolved. It may not be easy or very pleasant, but getting through this now should make it a lot better for you as time goes on.

    Of course, as with all of my online answers, my advice is limited by the brevity of your question and the facts provided. Additional information would be required to provide definitive legal advice, so this answer isn't intended to, and does not, create an attorney-client relationship.

    Good luck!

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  • Can I file a Summary of Order Admistration through the mail?

    My late father had a home forclosed in 1994 when the home sold there was a overage of $5200 that he never knew about and in 1998 he died without a will. Last year I was contacted about this money in the Florida Unclaimed property and when I filed...

    Jan’s Answer

    It appears that what Florida is requesting is a "Family Administration", an abbreviated way of opening an estate in Florida. To do this, you must file a petition with the court in the Florida county where your father lived at the time of his death (if in the Miami area, this is likely Dade County). In the petition, you ask the court to distribute the remaining assets to you and your brother (assuming you are the only living children).

    You can get more information on the petition requirements at http://bit.ly/pZxVR.

    Of course, as with all of my online answers, my advice is limited by the brevity of your question and the facts provided. Additional information would be required to provide definitive legal advice, so this answer isn't intended to, and does not, create an attorney-client relationship.

    Good luck!

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  • Why would the State not like the family paying for bills while an estate in is probate ?

    if the estate runs out of money to pay bills would do you do /

    Jan’s Answer

    When the personal representative of the deceased opens the estate, the representative is required to give notice to all known creditors -- this would include mortgage companies and other lenders, credit card issuers, utilities, and any others to whom the decedent owed money at the time of death. The creditors must file a claim within a year of the notice to be entitled to a share of the estate proceeds.

    If the estate does not have enough money to pay off all of the debts, generally the creditors are paid off first according to any security interests they have in the property (for instance, a mortgage company gets first dibs at the sale proceeds from the mortgaged property; an auto lender would get the proceeds of the sale of the vehicle up to its remaining loan amount). After that, unsecured creditors get whatever is left over in proportion to their interests. The estate doesn't have to pay bills on a schedule other than that when all claims are known and all available funds are tallied, the personal representative will pay the claims in proportion to their respective interests.

    Finally, don't ever offer to pay estate debts out of your own funds. If the estate is insolvent, meaning there's not enough money to pay everything, the creditors have no rights to someone else's property unless another individual cosigned a loan or is listed on a credit account.

    Of course, as with all of my online answers, my advice is limited by the brevity of your question and the facts provided. Additional information would be required to provide definitive legal advice, so this answer isn't intended to, and does not, create an attorney-client relationship.

    Good luck!

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  • Can I initiate the sale of a property that was owned by my deceased parent without first becoming the administrator of her estat

    My Mom passed away in April and her last mortgage payment was made in April. I would like to sell the property to payoff her other personal debt with the proceeds from the sale and I would like to do it before the mortgage company attempts to for...

    Jan’s Answer

    If your concern is whether the holders of your mother's other debts will wait, if you've informed them that she passed away and you are in the process of opening an estate, there should be no problem in getting them to hold off on any collection efforts, since when you open the estate you will be required to notify them and they will be required to file a claim against the estate.

    If your concern is the time that your intended purchaser has as a deadline for the sale, you could show the purchaser your application for letters of administration so that the purchaser understands that you are not delaying anything on purpose but rather you have to wait to complete the sale due to the estate administration.

    Finally, I would strongly recommend that you at least consult with an attorney on both the estate administration and the sale, since it's possible your mother could have additional debts of which you're unaware, and you could be distributing the assets to other creditors before knowing the extent of her debt. The inheritance tax form is also somewhat complicated, and you would also need to reserve funds from the estate to pay the tax that would be due. If you have other siblings, they would also have a right to a proportionate share of the estate property, so your acting alone could subject you to claims by your siblings.

    Of course, as with all of my online answers, my advice is limited by the brevity of your question and the facts provided. Additional information would be required to provide definitive legal advice, so this answer isn't intended to, and does not, create an attorney-client relationship.

    Good luck!

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  • Can Seamstress be required to give me the name of attorney handling her affairs related to refunding my money?

    I contracted a couture seamstress to create a custom gown for my daughter's prom, sending 7 pictures of the gown from different vantage points. The dress recieved in not at all what was commissioned and is not beyond beginner quality in terms of c...

    Jan’s Answer

    The seamstress' "trademark" issue makes no sense in your context. A trademark has nothing to do with whether you are satisfied with the gown and whether she owes you a refund.

    If, as you mentioned, you have written proof that she promised to refund your payments, the demand letter you would send to her should include either a direct quote from the email where she promised the refund or an attached copy of the email where she promised the refund (or both). Confirm that if she does not make the refund within a reasonable period (you could specify ten days), you will file a complaint in small claims court and her substandard work would then become a matter of public record.

    Send the demand letter certified mail, return receipt requested, as the California attorney mentioned, or you could hand-deliver the letter to her at her place of business if that is possible (and you could take someone along as a witness that she received the letter). Keep the letter short; demand the refund that she promised, and give her the deadline for response with your promise to file a complaint against her if you do not receive the refund by your deadline. Don't include a lot of writing about the specifics of the work defects; just make a general statement, supported by your emails. Tell her that trademark is irrelevant to the workmanship on the gown, and you will not be sidetracked by her claim that you must go through her attorney.

    Finally, make sure that you follow through with filing a claim in small claims court if she doesn't pay you. Your local magistrate's office is generally helpful in guiding you through the complaint form.

    Of course, as with all of my online answers, my advice is limited by the brevity of your question and the facts provided. Additional information would be required to provide definitive legal advice, so this answer isn't intended to, and does not, create an attorney-client relationship.

    Good luck!

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  • My former realtor purchased my home in Sheriff Sale after poor representation. Is it legal?

    Realtor constantly scheduled appointments for showings 15 minutes in advance and cancelled 30 minutes after the fact. Was rude throughout and as soon as they found out the house was going up for sheriff sale removed their signs and keybox. A we...

    Jan’s Answer

    The Mercer County Bar Association has a lawyer referral service that will provide a $25 half-hour initial consultation with someone who practices real estate law to determine whether you might have a claim against your real estate agent. You can get information on the service at http://www.mercerbar.com/LRS_public.htm or call 609-585-6200 Monday through Friday from 9:30a to 3p.

    In addition to legal action against the agent, you might want to file a complaint against your agent with the state licensing agency. The Pennsylvania Real Estate Commission, a state government agency, licenses all real estate agents, whether a broker or salesperson. You may file a formal complaint with the Commission about your agent, as well as get more information about state licensing requirements and conflicts of interest, at http://bit.ly/9ExFT4.

    An online complaint form is available at http://www.doscomplaintform.state.pa.us. The regulations of the Commission pertaining to a licensed agent's duties to a seller are online at http://www.pacode.com/secure/data/049/chapter35/s35.292.html.

    Not all licensed agents are Realtors. If the agent who represented you is a member of the Pennsylvania Association of Realtors (PAR), you may also file an ethics complaint with PAR through the PAR website at http://www.parealtor.org/filing-an-ethics-complaint.

    Of course, as with all of my online answers, my advice is limited by the brevity of your question and the facts provided. Additional information would be required to provide definitive legal advice, so this answer isn't intended to, and does not, create an attorney-client relationship.

    Good luck!

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  • Do I need an atty to call the decendent atty to make sure I am listed to receive disbursements?

    I am the grand daughter of the decendent, and the daughter of her late daughter Algirtha Marlowe which proceed woudl have gone to. The Family is not not being honest. Should I call the atty myself or have legal representation? I have the case numb...

    Jan’s Answer

    If you are a beneficiary, the representative of the estate is required to give you notice. As a granddaughter, if your grandparent did not have a will, you would be entitled to inherit your mother's share of the property in equal shares with any siblings you have.

    If your grandmother had a will, you may still be entitled to your mother's share along with your siblings. The best thing for you to do is to call the estate attorney, identify yourself, and provide your contact information so that you are notified when estate notices are sent.

    Of course, as with all of my online answers, my advice is limited by the brevity of your question and the facts provided. Additional information would be required to provide definitive legal advice, so this answer isn't intended to, and does not, create an attorney-client relationship.

    Good luck!

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  • My husband just passed and the mortgage was in his name and they will not release any information with out an authorized letter

    we did not have a will and bought the house when we were married.

    Jan’s Answer

    To get the house transferred into your name, at minimum you'll have to open an estate with your county register of wills. If you were not on the title as a joint owner and you have either surviving children or either of your husband's parents as survivors (if there were no children), since he had no will, the property -- including your home and its contents, any bank and investment accounts, and any other real or personal property -- must be split between you as surviving spouse and your children.

    If you were a joint owner of the home or listed with your husband as "tenants by the entireties" you will not have to go through an estate to get the property -- but you will have to open an estate and get yourself appointed as administrator to get the paperwork -- called a "short certificate" -- that will authorize you to get the information from the mortgage company.

    You should consult with an estate attorney in your area to help you with the estate administration. The small amount you will spend now to work through the issues you will need to resolve will save you a huge amount of headaches later. You can call your county bar association's lawyer referral service to find a qualified practitioner for a low-cost initial consultation.

    Of course, as with all of my online answers, my advice is limited by the brevity of your question and the facts provided. Additional information would be required to provide definitive legal advice, so this answer isn't intended to, and does not, create an attorney-client relationship.

    Good luck!

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  • Bride cancelled wedding leaving alot of expensices mother of the groom gown, shoes, rehearsal dinner dep, invitions.

    Is the bride responsible for these expensives?

    Jan’s Answer

    The most important point for you: read your contracts. Especially with the venue where you had the rehearsal dinner, you may have a period of time in which you can get all or part of your deposit returned to you. If you have not yet worn your gown, and there were no alterations made to it, the seller may accept a return. Same thing goes for the shoes.

    Regarding the invitations, again the contract should show what your liability may be, but if the printing is not yet done, you may be able to cancel any further work and get a part of your payment credited. Many retailers accept returns to promote goodwill and favorable word-of-mouth in their respective areas.

    Retailers are not required to accept returns, but many have their own return policies where they will accept merchandise for a full refund within a set period of time (30 days, 90 days) and if the return is made after that time you would receive store credit. Again, EVERY retailer sets its own policy, from no returns for any reason to generous policies giving refunds. Call or go in to each one and ask.

    Of course, as with all of my online answers, my advice is limited by the brevity of your question and the facts provided. Additional information would be required to provide definitive legal advice, so this answer isn't intended to, and does not, create an attorney-client relationship.

    Good luck!

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  • Can i legally "divorce" a sibling who is cruel to me?

    i have a sister who has been nothing but cruel to me throughout my life. she has emotional issues and has been on phychotrophic drugs for almost twenty years. we are in our forties now. she is my only sibling and is very jealous of me. she ha...

    Jan’s Answer

    You have several options here, but first I must admit I'm a bit confused by what you refer to as her "next of kin powers" - unless you are incapacitated and have not appointed someone through a power of attorney to be your attorney-in-fact, your sister would have no legal authority over you.

    First, make sure you have set up durable financial and health care powers of attorney, naming someone you know and trust to handle your financial and health care affairs. The person you appoint will then have the authority to make decisions for you. The financial power of attorney can become effective immediately or be limited to when you are not able to act for yourself (called a "springing" power, which I do not recommend, since it presents problems for your representative in proving that you are incapacitated). If you don't trust someone to handle your affairs for your benefit when you're healthy and able to handle them yourself, that person doesn't suddenly become more trustworthy by virtue of your later incapacity.

    If you make a durable health care power of attorney and advance directive ("living will"), you then authorize someone else to handle communications with health care personnel in the event you are unable to communicate. The same degree of trust as in the financial power of attorney is important here.

    In addition to making your powers of attorney, you should also make your will to ensure that your sister does not inherit anything from you, that all of your property would go to your children and whoever else you might want to receive any of your belongings.

    Finally, if your sister has threatened or hurt you, you might want to consider some additional alternatives:

    One, contact the Philadelphia Domestic Violence Hotline, a free 24-hour resource for individuals with questions or concerns about domestic violence, at 1-866-723-3014. The hotline could talk with you about the possibility of getting a restraining order against your sister. The hotline's website is http://bit.ly/JVmb01.

    The hotline staff could refer you to an attorney who could assist you with a restraining order, or you could call the Philadelphia Bar Association's Lawyer Referral service at 215-238-6333. The participating lawyers charge $30 for a one-half hour consultation.

    In addition to a restraining order, if your sister is mentally unstable, you could talk with an attorney to see if there is a chance that you could get her involuntarily committed to a mental health facility for treatment if she is a danger to herself or others. The lawyer referral service could help you with that as well.

    Of course, as with all of my online answers, my advice is limited by the brevity of your question and the facts provided. Additional information would be required to provide definitive legal advice, so this answer isn't intended to, and does not, create an attorney-client relationship.

    Good luck!

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