When a mother passes away without a known will, who gets her assets/belongings?

Asked over 1 year ago - Scottsboro, AL

I am the only child my mom had. She passed away July 2012, and it isn't known if she had a will or any life insurance. Prior to passing away in the hospital, she was living in a nursing home for several months, before that she was living with me. But before that she was living with a close friend, and most of her personal belongings are at the friends house (who isn't allowing me access to anything). Also another friend she met in the nursing home has her personal belongings my mom had in the nursing home, and won't allow me to get those. My mom also has 2 grandsons & 1 great granddaughter.My mom has some of my own personal belongings I gave to her from her parents when they passed away. They belonged to me. What, if anything, can be done? This just seems very wrong.

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Adam S. Bernick

    Contributor Level 13

    2

    Lawyers agree

    1

    Answered . You need to retain an attorney to assist with these matter. While the initial consultation may be free or a flat fee, the amount amount work needed to compel return the property may cost more than the items are worth.

  2. Joseph Michael Pankowski Jr

    Contributor Level 18

    2

    Lawyers agree

    1

    Answered . I'm very sorry for your loss. Given the facts above, you should petition the probate court for the town/city where your mother resided to become the Administrator of your mother's estate. You will then have the legal authority to collect your mother's assets, including her personal belongings. It would be advisable to retain an attorney to assist you with this process. Good luck to you.

    This information is presented as a public service. It should not be construed to be formal legal advice nor... more
  3. James P. Frederick

    Contributor Level 20

    Answered . I believe you have asked this a number of times, now. I agree with my colleagues. You really need to involve an attorney to assist you. Dealing with personal property is always complicated because these assets have no "title" and proving ownership can be very difficult.

    James Frederick

    ***Please be sure to mark if you find the answer "helpful" or a "best" answer. Thank you! I hope this helps. ******... more

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