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James C. Higgs

James Higgs’s Answers

262 total


  • My wifes uncle passed away and my wife was listed as a beneficary.

    Her aunt passed away in 2012. How long does it take for the trust to be actually dived out and monies received. My wife has already filled out the W-9 tax form and signed the papers to say yes to veiw the actual trus. We were just wondering and ar...

    James’s Answer

    I agree with the other attorneys. I just wanted to state that you should not be intimidated to talk with the other attorney. He will not bite. If he will not talk, get an attorney to write a letter for you to get answers. These things can be kept very cordial, and relatively simple.

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  • How do I file a motion to enter default judgment in a custody case?

    The defendant currently has 16 days left in the 28 day time period granted to respond to my complaint for custody and support. All of the court forms I see for the state of Michigan to request a default judgment are for when a certain sum exists, ...

    James’s Answer

    Generally, you must draft your own if it is not a straight Civil matter.

    A simple wording like the following generally works. On Custody most courts seem to want to hold a hearing on these.

    [Insert caption.]

    MOTION FOR DEFAULT JUDGMENT

    Plaintiff states in support of this motion:

    Defendant was required to respond by [date], and has failed to do so. Default judgment under these circumstances is authorized by      .

    Plaintiff requests the court to enter an order for default judgment pursuant to MCR 2.603.

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  • How long do responsible parties have to file a will in probate and execute in Ohio?

    One of my family members will be the executor of the estate, and our loved one died several months ago in Ohio. The family member relayed they would begin handling everything in several months due to time constraints. I contacted them and now th...

    James’s Answer

    You likely can hire an attorney and force probate open and force the executor to produce the will. The cost of this would often be out of your pocket. There is no set time limit for when probate must be open or distribution complete.

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  • How can a family member get legal guardianship of me?

    I have been living away from home for almost 4 months, I am 16 years old and living with my second cousin and his wife who are taking care of me but my mom is still receiving food stamps and child support for me and not helping my cousins AT ALL f...

    James’s Answer

    In most jurisdictions at 16 you could nominate a guardian. Court forms should be available through your local probate court for your cousin to fill out. your mom would have to be given notice of the hearing and can oppose it. An attorney could be very helpful, and yyou may want to contact legal services in your area to get help.

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  • Can adult estranged son in another state excluded from Father's will receive any inheiritence?

    My adult brother who estranged himself from our parents was Excluded in my Father's will. Our Mother is also passed on. The estate went to probate, everything went ok. It's been six months and now excluded son that lives in another state, is tryi...

    James’s Answer

    I agree with the other attorneys. I would add that if the brother's location was unknown and a formal process was used to get alternative service he may be out of luck. The procedure used matters here and an attorney should review the file with you to explain your rights.

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  • Do you have to wait 60on days to get your money crom a trust

    I mean 6 months

    James’s Answer

    I agree with the other attorney, I would only add that at time administering the trust can take longer, for instance, if real estate needs sold. Oftentimes I suggest trustees retain cash assets to be certain all costs are covered.

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  • Should a Ladybird Deed be prepared before or after application to Medicaid? Does Arizona have the equivalent to a Lady bird Deed

    Moms home is in AZ but will apply for medicaid in MI Can the recapture be avoided?

    James’s Answer

    Michigan's recapture law only applies to assets that go through the probate process. A Lady Bird deed should solve the problem. However I would carefully consider hiring an Elder Law Attorney to make sure the assets and income are properly protected in these instances.

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  • What can I do about forfeiture of house I am 1/2 owner of? I don't even know what kind of attorney (area of law) to hire

    ere anything I can do about forfeiture notice on house I am half - owner of ? My brother was charged with using it as a drug house . What is most disturbing to me is that the paperwork flat out lies about things I supposedly said that I did not...

    James’s Answer

    You would likely need to open probate in order to pursue this. A few questions I would have for you, would be whether there is any debt on the house, and what kind of situation you are in as far as selling and defending against the forfeiture. It is difficult law, and no promises should be made. I could offer a free consultation in Mt. Pleasant to review the matter if you can get paperwork around to meet with me.

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  • A cousin recently passed leaving his estate intestate. In Michigan what is the sequence of heirs in this situation?

    His only survivors include a niece , children of a deceased nephew , 3 surviving first cousins , and a couple second cousins who are children of deceased first cousins . Are the cousins considered heirs in this instance - even when there are ...

    James’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    The nieces and children of the nephew would get everything. It goes to his parents, then down to brothers and sisters. Then to nieces amd nephews, after which it is divided in equal shares with one share divided among survivors of deceased nephew. Cousins are out.

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  • Do all parties on a revocable trust have to sign documents if selling a home that's in the trust ?

    Buying a home on a contract but found out the home is in a trust but all the parties in the trust didn't sign documents . Think it's some illegal things going on and not sure what to do ,

    James’s Answer

    Only the current Trustee or Trustees need to sign to transfer real estate out of a trust. All parties do not have to sign. The Trust itself would name who these Trustees are, and often it is joint and several and only one signature is needed of one trustee.

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