Skip to main content

What legal rights do I have to my grandmothers home that i lived in for 30 years, she is now deceased and did not sign her will,

Port Jervis, NY |

her kid want the house sold for money for themselves, I still live there,and am about to be homeless

+ Read More

Attorney answers 4


If there is no will it will pass through her Estate and go to her kid (s) assuming she is not married. You may end up having to move out.

I am a former federal and State prosecutor and have been doing criminal defense work for over 16 years. I was named to the Super Lawyers list as one of the top attorneys in New York for 2012 and 2013. No more than 5 percent of the lawyers in the state are selected by Super Lawyers. Martindale-Hubbell has given me its highest rating - AV Preeminent - in the areas of Criminal Law, Personal Injury, and Litigation. According to Martindale-Hubbell”AV Preeminent is a significant rating accomplishment - a testament to the fact that a lawyer's peers rank him or her at the highest level of professional excellence." Fewer than 8% of attorneys achieve an AV Preeminent rating. I also have the highest ranking – “superb” – on Avvo. The above answer, and any follow up comments or emails is for informational purposes only and not meant as legal advice.


I agree with Mr. Rothstein. I do not see any right to remain in the home. You might be able to buy the home from them, if they are willing, but that sounds doubtful. This situation highlights the need for every person to get their estate planning in order. If your grandmother had done that, presumably, you would not have these worries, now. Estate planning is a necessary fact of life.

James Frederick

***Please be sure to mark if you find the answer "helpful" or a "best" answer. Thank you! I hope this helps. ***************************************** LEGAL DISCLAIMER I am licensed to practice law in the State of Michigan and have offices in Wayne and Ingham Counties. My practice is focused in the areas of estate planning and probate administration. I am ethically required to state that the above answer does not create an attorney/client relationship. These responses should be considered general legal education and are intended to provide general information about the question asked. Frequently, the question does not include important facts that, if known, could significantly change the answer. Information provided on this site should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney that practices in your state. The law changes frequently and varies from state to state. If I refer to your state's laws, you should not rely on what I say; I just did a quick Internet search and found something that looked relevant that I hoped you would find helpful. You should verify and confirm any information provided with an attorney licensed in your state. I hope you our answer helpful!

Ian William MacLean

Ian William MacLean


James, Couldn't she be an intestate distributee if her parent - grandmother's child - predeceased grandmother and it's her aunts and uncles who want the house? - Ian W. MacLean

James P. Frederick

James P. Frederick


Ian~ That is certainly a possibility. I may be mistaking this for another summary. I was under the impression, however, that there was a follow-up (or preceding) question that made it clear that a Will left the property to the aunts and uncles. Asker's parent had died years before and no provision was made for asker, even though she was the one who cared for grandmother in her old age. If that is NOT the situation, then Asker clearly needs to meet with an attorney. In that case, I absolutely agree that she could be an intestate distributee. James


Unfortunately you have no rights to access and live in the house. If your parent who was a child of your grandmother is deceased, you would be entitled to his/her share of the estate. Under intestacy your grandmother's estate will be distributed equally to her children with the children of any deceased child taking their parent's share equally.

The general advice above does not constitute an attorney-client relationship: you haven't hired me or my firm or given me confidential information by posting on this public forum, and my answer on this public forum does not constitute attorney-client advice. IRS Circular 230 Disclosure: In order to comply with requirements imposed by the Internal Revenue Service, we inform you that any U.S. tax advice contained in this communication (including any attachments) is not intended to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (i) avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code or (ii) promoting, marketing, or recommending to another party any transaction or matter addressed herein. While I am licensed to practice in New York and California, I do not actively practice in New York. Regardless, nothing said should be deemed an opinion of law of any state. All readers need to do their own research or pay an attorney for a legal opinion if one is necessary or desired.


The answer to your question is that it depends on whether you are the son or daughter of one of your grandmother's children who predeceased your grandmother. If your mother or father who was born from your grandmother (or adopted by her) died before your grandmother, then you stand in the same "shoes" with the same rights to a share of the house as your aunts and uncles. If there is no will, then all of her living children and all of her predeceased children's children who survived grandmother have a right to a share in the home. If, however, your mother or father who was born from your grandmother is alive - one of the kids who want the house sold for themselves, then you are most have no property rights. In either case, if you are about to lose your home, wouldn't you want to talk with an experienced attorney to provide you with counsel on your rights? - Ian W. MacLean

This is not legal advice. If you would like legal advice, please contact the firm. The firm offers legal advice only to clients who have retained the firm in writing. New York ethics rules for attorneys and the rules of the Appellate Division require an written engagement letter or retainer agreement for all matters anticipated to exceed $3,000 in legal fees.

Wills and estates topics

Recommended articles about Wills and estates

What others are asking

Can't find what you're looking for?

Post a free question on our public forum.

Ask a Question

- or -

Search for lawyers by reviews and ratings.

Find a Lawyer