What to do when you find out your sister has illegally claimed to be the sole heir of your deceased mother

Asked over 3 years ago - Orange, CA

Yes, my mother died in Novemeber 2004 and they are 5 sisters. However my youngest sister got everything she appointed herself as the executor of momas estate and moneys, bank account etc......well we just this month of December 2010 found out they are checks been issued to her and not divided. We found out at the court house that she had listed herself as SOLE HEIR and didnt list any of her sisters, when we found this out we put ourselves down as heirs and give the court our addresses , names etc........and they stamped the document and put it in the file, however they was a check that was to be issued to this sister the very next day of 200 dollars but the court seeing she wasnt sole heir and we were listed just in time to get our share of the check, somehow the court after promising us we would all get 40 dollars of this check and they would divide it and send it to us all, we didnt receive anything, and we called the court house today and we found out they issued it to the sister whom claimed to be the sole heir after we had it straighted out ........we done what a lawyer told us to do by listing ourselves so it would be Now divided equally when she has already been getting checks for herself only.........now i know this is illegal of her to have done this. And also the court failed to carry out their legal duty as well. We dont have money for a lawyer, but shouldnt the court be responsible to retreive our part of this second check that came in this month after listing ourselves as heirs? And i would like to know exactly what illegal charge could be brought against my sister for taking everything, and still getting checks that come in my dead mothers name and cashing them. Is this Embezzlement? and what can we do? And the court not carrying out their duty about this check when they were informed, and notorized our names, and addresses and assured us we would get 40 dollars each and she would not get the entire check as before. And also they are more checks coming in. And we do not know what to do. Or what she can be charged with. Can you please advice me. We live in Mount Airy NC........

Attorney answers (2)

  1. Frank Wei-Hong Chen

    Contributor Level 20

    Answered . Could you please clarify whether you are all in North Carolina? When you refer to the courthouse, are you referring to a courthouse in California or in North Carolina? Which courthouse is your mother's estate being probated?

  2. Dwight Edward Tompkins

    Contributor Level 11

    1

    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . Your question was posted in Orange, California; but your question ends with you stating that you live in North Carolina. You need to bring a challenge in the same Probate Court where your sister opened the case; bringing a case to remove her as executor, including a demand for an accounting, and asking the court to re-open the Probate so that all of the heirs are included and notified. It is unclear to me in the facts as presented where the Probate case took place. You should obtain legal counsel from an attorney who handles "contested probate" cases. Without more information, it is difficult to provide any more response.

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