my brother, who talked my mother into changing her will and leaving everything to him, locked my mother in his house, would not let me or
my son see her or talk to her on the phone; she got sick; he didn't get her
medical care. He called 911 to have her pronounced dead, but she was alive, and they tried to revive her for 40 minutes but she died. He told the ER room doctor that she had been fine; wasn't sick;, and she had a history of stroke, which she did not, but nobody checked it out. He and my sister siphoned all her money, and now he is getting her house also. So my question is:
If an executor/fiduciary/caretaker/sole beneficiary breaches his duty as fiduciary and caretaker after the will is made and before the testator dies, is he still entitled to be the beneficiary?
I am quite sorry to hear about these events. The one thing you should know above anything else is that you have the right to have the will set aside as having been the product of the "undue influence" of your brother. You also have the right to recover the funds taken from your mother. If your mother is not in a position at this point to determine how she has been vicitimzed, then I suggest that you have a guardian appointed on her behalf. The guardian could then bring suit for the benefit of your mother and seek to set aside the will and recover the funds as mentioned above.
We this profile quite often in undue influence situations; one child attempts to take over complete control of a parent's affairs because that child has a hidden agenda, and in the process that child cuts off his/her siblings' access to the parent.
Please feel free to contact me if you wish to discuss this matter in greater detail. My blog on undue influence and other things related to estate and trust disputes is on my web site at www.lawfang.com
This is a very serious matter. In fact, your brother may have committed a criminal act. Also, in Pennsylvania we have something called the Slayer's Act which basically precludes a beneficiary from receiving assets from the person they have killed. You must immediately seek counsel in your state to explore your legal options. Do this immediately.
Hope this helps.
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As mentioned in a prior answer, it is an all too common story for an adult child to take effective control of an aged parent and then wall them off from other family members. The allegations about the 911 call and the emergency room doctor move this out of the more common situations and on to a new problem level, however.
These are very serious issues raised by your story. There may have been both criminal and civil wrongs. You should contact an attorney immediately to assist you in this matter which could see you contacting the police or the district attorney's office. Do not delay in contacting an attorney.
Daniel T. Blake
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