Skip to main content
David M. Pyke

David Pyke’s Answers

898 total


  • No Will Probate Case

    In 2014 my mother passed with no will. She owned a house, car and personal items that will be sold...The court notified me that I will inherit 25 percent of her estate once it is sold. Her second husband is the Admin. I am in a different state. Wi...

    David’s Answer

    If you don't feel the estate is large enough or you lack the funds to hire an attorney, file a document with the Clerk titled "Notice of Appearance and Request for Notice" and request notice of everything filed and set in the case, provide your address phone number, and email. Mail the document to the clerk and make sure it has all of the case information at the top, like you find on any other pleading sin the case.

    See question 
  • Mother died without a will. I am the oldest of 2. How can I get her house under my name?

    My sister has not been in touch with us for several years. Would I be able to get ownership of the house that my mother owned? She also left behind a property that was her mother's.

    David’s Answer

    In the situation you describe, a probate proceeding is necessary. The probate process is to provide an organized transfer of a Decedent's assets and to see that their debts and taxes are paid. Without probate, anyone who deals with estate assets (banks, purchasers, title companies, etc) would be at risk for giving those assets to the wrong person or getting imperfect title. Although you may know who the heirs are and who should get which property, third parties don't know that without probate. Thus, probate is necessary to allow your buyer peace of mind, give an organized process to handling the Decedent's assets, and to pay just and due debts. Thankfully, Texas has a very fine and streamlined process that, without family dispute, often keeps legal and other costs very low. You do need a probate attorney, but the cost may surprise you in a good way

    See question 
  • Do I need a Probate Attorney

    My friend's mom passed away 9 months ago. She purchased a home in 2001 but has no Will or spouse, No executor; nothing! None of her kids seem to have any interest in the house. They just took some of the personal property for themselves. ...

    David’s Answer

    You might be able to convince one or more the children to allow you to pay to open probate and purchase the house from the estate. The only way to obtain clean title is to open a probate estate and if you could get everyone's cooperation, then you might be able to work a deal. You need to check the status of the taxes and the mortgage before you consider purchasing the propert . Regardless, the exemptions passed away with the homeowner. As of 1/1/15, the over 65 and homestead exemptions are no longer valid.

    See question 
  • Do i need to file an affidavit of heirship?

    My father died intestate. He is survived by his wife n 3 adult children. We are their biological heirs. Its my understanding that my mother filed an affidavit of heirship and listed herself and all my fathers brothers and sisters but omitted me...

    David’s Answer

    Here is a question that makes a big difference in the answer to be provided: Did your father have any children of a relationship with anyone other than your mother (who I presume he was married to at death). Without that fact, it is hard to give you a precise answer. Regardless, the affidavit of heirship is probably wrong and you probably need to take some legal action to respond. Please consult an experienced probate attorney.

    See question 
  • Do i need a estate?

    My mother passed away, she left a mortgage loan and a lot of debt. Her assets include a house and a vehicle

    David’s Answer

    If the debt exceeds the value of the property, I would not take any action. It means, however, that the house can't be yours or any other family members. It will be foreclosed in time. If the house has equity, you will need a probate attorney to assist you in finding the most affordable way to obtain your rights to the property.

    See question 
  • My parents passed away without a will.after my mother passed away my stepfathers family came and took everthing

    my wife and i took care of my mother,stepfather,and brother for 20 years.Bought groceries.,paid bills,took them to doctor visits etc. My stepfather very seldom saw or talked to his side of the family. A couple of weeks after my mother passed away ...

    David’s Answer

    You are a victim of what I call "pickup probate" -- meaning the one that gets to the house first with a pickup wins. It is very difficult to fix the issues relating to the "stuff" they took from the house. The house, itself, however can't be transferred except by proper legal process. You need a probate attorney who should be able to help you and your brothers obtain the house.

    See question 
  • I'm an ex convict that is the beneficiary of my father 401k and insurance. I still owe restitution and The IRS.

    Will the IRS and the federal government take that money if he passes? Is there a something he can do to pass the money directly to me.

    David’s Answer

    Your father needs to seek the counsel of someone about a trust. This is a very tricky area and there are no guarantees of success.

    See question 
  • My husband passed away in 2009 in Texas. He left a notarized will leaving the 10.01 acres we jointly owned to me.

    He left photos and mementos to his daughter, a saw to his son and a gun cabinet to another son. The land was mortgaged in both our names. I continued to make monthly payments on the land. His will was not probated because I was told by a member...

    David’s Answer

    This may be the most common bad advice lawyers give -- don't probate the will. It should have been probated in 4 years, so you will have to plead an excuse to have not done so. I think Judge Copeland in Collin County will accept the idiot attorney excuse and probate the will as a muniment of title.

    See question 
  • My father recently passed away, he was not married so I know legally I inherit any property .

    My aunt has his truck without his permission and won't release to me ,how can I go about getting the truck picked up

    David’s Answer

    The police won't enforce your inheritance rights. You need to begin probate, prove your rights, and get an administrator who can do things to obtain the truck.

    See question 
  • Step-mother died no will, dad has passed left a will. Adopted grown children and step-children grown signed rights away

    My step-mother died and did not leave a will, her children signed their rights away to my daddy. He has now passed away and her left a will. I have two adopted sisters and one biological sister. I am named an executor on the will and they have bee...

    David’s Answer

    If you are the executor, you need to get the will and file it for probate. You will get an order that will appoint you the executor which will establish your rights to the property. Then you can take the steps to maximize the protection of the property. It is very difficult to stop someone from taking personal property that they have access to.

    See question