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Randall S Perrier

Randall Perrier’s Answers

271 total


  • How do I get a deed transferred into my name. The house was left to me by descendant through a letter that was not notarized?

    Randall’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    I agree that you want to have the letter reviewed by an experienced probate lawyer.

    That being said, if the letter is not a valid holographic will, you may want to visit with a lawyer about the possibility of claiming the property under the legal theory of adverse possession. In general, adverse possession allows someone who has taken possession of a property without the consent of the true owners for a statutory period of time can file suit to claim ownership of the property.

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  • Can you ask the executor for an estate accounting by text message in Texas? Or does the request have to be in writing?

    Randall’s Answer

    To respond to your question, one would first have to understand whether the executor is serving in an independent administration or a dependent administration. Independent administrations are the most common.

    Regarding the request for an accounting in an independent administration, Texas Estates Code Section 404.001 provides, in part:

    Sec. 404.001. ACCOUNTING. (a) At any time after the expiration of 15 months after the date that the court clerk first issues letters testamentary or of administration to any personal representative of an estate, any person interested in the estate may demand an accounting from the independent executor.

    As you can see, you must have an interest in the estate and you must wait at least 15 months from the time the executor received letters testamentary to be able to demand an accounting. If you have an interest in the estate and 15 months have passed, the statute does not seem to make clear whether the demand has to be in writing.

    I would advise that you visit with a probate lawyer who could help you to understand and protect your rights.

    Best of luck!

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  • Do you have a flat fee and how much is typical for a reality for a small estate and only two possible beneficiary?

    Randall’s Answer

    You would be well advised to visit with a probate attorney to learn what probate process will work best for your wife's estate, taking into consideration the assets and liabilities in her estate, her family tree, and whether or not you are able to find the original will (or explain to the court's satisfaction what happened to the original). Fees can vary dramatically depending on your location and the complexity of the case.

    If you are unable to locate the original will, a small estate affidavit may be a probate process worth investigating with a probate attorney.

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  • Do I need Muniment of title in order to settle my fathers estate?

    Randall’s Answer

    I'm sorry that you are experiencing this confusion. Often folks will set up trusts with the express desire of avoiding the need to probate their wills. If all of the decedent's assets were properly titled in the name of the trust or payable to the trust upon his death, this strategy will successfully avoid the need to probate the decedent's will.

    Often the problem to this strategy is one or more assets does not get placed into the name of the trust. I suspect this is what happened with the Victory Capitol account you referenced.

    You would be well advised to engage the services of a probate lawyer to assist you with the probate process.

    Best of luck!

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  • If a will or trust is not registered with county or gone through probate. can someone access money from bank?

    Randall’s Answer

    Generally speaking, banks are very careful not to pay out money from a deceased party's bank account unless they have documentation that protects them. Banks typically require an order from a probate court that sets forth who is entitled to collect the decedent's funds from the bank or to whom the funds at the bank must be paid.

    That being said, if the executor also happened to be listed as a co-owner of the account or the beneficiary of the account, the bank could properly distribute the funds to the executor.

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  • Real estate/deed and title ?

    Randall’s Answer

    You would be well advised to engage the services of a qualified probate attorney who can communicate with the title company.

    The attorney could be helpful by providing legal authorities that would help the title company reach the conclusion that only the proceeds from the sale related to the child against whom the liens were filed are subject to the lien.

    Best of luck!

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  • How do we proceed with finalizing our mother’s estate?

    Randall’s Answer

    If your mother did not have a will and your mother was not married at the time of her death, your mother's children would be the heirs who are entitled to inherit her assets.

    You would be well advised to engage a qualified probate attorney in or near San Antonio who could assist you in gaining an understanding of and protecting your rights in your mother's estate.

    Best of luck!

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  • If my step dad (life estate) has vacated the property for over 3 yrs, can my brother and I remove him from having life estate?

    Randall’s Answer

    You ask a very good question. It is not clear from your question, however, how your stepdad obtained what you refer to as a "life estate."

    Your mother could have granted your stepdad a life estate under a deed or you could have inherited your mother's property subject to your stepdad's homestead right to occupy the property during his lifetime, so long as he elects to use or occupy the property as his homestead. See Texas Estates Code 102.005.

    If your stepdad received the life estate pursuant to a deed transfer, it makes no difference whether he occupies the property or not, he retains the right to possess the property until his death.

    If your stepdad merely enjoys the surviving spouse's homestead right to occupy the property as his homestead for the duration of his life, it is possible that he could lose his right to occupy the property if he abandons it. Whether he has abandoned the property is a matter for a court to decide.

    I recommend that you engage the services of a qualified probate attorney to assist you in understanding and protect your rights.

    Best of luck!

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  • How can I get money that was supposed to be deposited into a court registry for a probate?

    Randall’s Answer

    It sounds like you have been thoughtful in your efforts to bring this matter to the attention of the executor of the estate.

    Mr. Clausen properly points out that an independent executor can be forced to distribute the assets of the estate if he or she has been serving for more than two years.

    I suggest that you engage the services of a qualified probate attorney to assist you in understanding and protecting your rights.

    Best of luck!

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  • Can my mom and her siblings kick my uncle out of the family home if my grandparents are older?

    Randall’s Answer

    Upon your grandmother's death, her interest in her and your grandfather's home will either pass according to (i) the terms of a valid will that she put into place before she was dealing with dementia or (ii) Texas law governing who receives property when you die without a will.

    If she did not have a will, her property would pass to her husband, if she only had children with her husband. If she had children with someone other than her current husband, her interest in the property would pass in equal shares to her children.

    Upon your grandmother's death, your grandfather can direct how his assets will pass by preparing a valid will under Texas law.

    I highly recommend your grandfather sit down with a qualified estate planning attorney to prepare a will that sets forth his wishes with respect to the property and any other assets he may own.

    If your grandparents no longer wish to allow your uncle to remain in their home, they may ask him to leave. If he refuses, it may be necessary to file a suit to have him evicted.

    Best of luck!

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