I am the only child my father passed away. There is speculation that my father and the current wife are divorced. Due to him having to apply for social security(SSDI) and VA benefits. I have searched the county where they lived for the divorce re...
You could already have filed something in probate court regarding your father's estate, and should have. Please do listen to Mr. Ashman, however, and don't try to do anything on your own. That's dangerous even in a really simple estate where no one is arguing. You don't have that situation; you have a situation where someone is refusing to cooperate and may be stealing assets. Not having an attorney in a case like that is likely going to cost you more than having one will. Best wishes to you.See question
I called the trustee attorney assigned to my chapter 7 case to see if there is anything I need to do. The office advised me to bring a hard copy of my taxes and my license and ss card to the 341 meeting and otherwise no actions currently were nee...
I am changing your practice area to bankruptcy, because this is really a bankruptcy question, not a trust question, although there is a bankruptcy trustee and a bankruptcy estate. The change of practice area should help you get better answers. Best wishes to you.See question
I have been trying to get my Autistic brother qualified for Medicaid however he was initially denied because he is receiving SSDI and death benefits from our parents. According to Medicaid he is receiving too much income to qualify. He has a Irrev...
Before you do anything, please get a consultation with an attorney who works with disabled clients on Medicaid benefits planning. There may be something that can be done to help your brother qualify for Medicaid, but it's not going to be possible for anyone to tell you the options in this forum. Without seeing the existing irrevocable trust, for example, no one can tell you what the effect of having your brother's Social Security benefits paid into it might be, or whether the trust's assets are going to be counted against him for needs-testing purposes. For another thing, Social Security may not even be wiling to pay the benefits to a trust. For yet another thing, if the existing trust is being counted as your brother's resources, it may be possible to have a court reform it so that it doesn't get counted. There are way too many factors for someone to answer your question about what to do without seeing a lot of information and meeting with you. It's great that you want to help your brother. Please make sure you get good help from an attorney who knows how to help him, though.See question
My Grandmother established a Irrevocable trust for my brother who is Autistic in 2008. I am his guardian and I am trying to get Medicaid benefits for him. Although I am currently named the owner/beneficiary on his Life Insurance policy should I c...
I commend you for trying to make sure your brother is taken care of and for thinking about these issues. However, you really need to consult a good estate planning attorney, one with experience working with the families of disabled persons, to make sure that you know the best way to address the issue. You may be able to transfer the life insurance policy to the existing irrevocable trust, but it may not be a good idea. A whole lot depends on how that trust is written, who the trustee is, who the beneficiaries are, who the life insurance policy is on, and other factors. There's no way to tell from here. If it's not a good idea for you to put the insurance policy into that trust, then there may be a better option that you can pursue. Get a copy of the existing trust and the policy, find a good estate planning attorney, and get a consultation. The attorney can then find out about all of the relevant facts and help you figure out the best way to address the issues.
Best wishes to you and your brother.See question
When my Mother passed away the Petition which was filed did not include a listing of her children as heirs. Only my Father was listed. He has now passed away. How do you correct the original Petition which was filed for my Mother? The Will listed ...
It's not clear from your post who filed the incorrect Petition, how long it has been since it was filed, whether the Petition was granted, or whether anyone was actually appointed as Executor of your mother's estate. Without that information, it's not really possible to tell what the best course of action would be.
I agree wholeheartedly with Mr. Ashman: get a good probate attorney and have them help you deal with this issue, and with the rest of the probate process (including your father's estate, if needed). There are too many potential pitfalls for probate to be a great do-it-yourself matter.See question
My husband recently died, and I was told that his adult sons (39 and 38) must sign the Acknowledgment of Service and Assent to Probate Instanter form. I understand the reason, but they don't can you explain so that I may share this information wit...
They don't actually HAVE to sign it, but if they are willing to do so it helps speed things along in getting the Will admitted to probate. By signing it, they are stating that they have been presented with a copy of the Will and the Petition (please note that you should send them the entire Will and the entire Petition when you ask them to sign the Petition, not just the page they are being asked to sign), and that they agree to the Will being admitted to probate and the Petition granted as is. If they don't sign, then they get notice when the Petition is filed, and they have a period of time in which they need to file any objections to the Petition that they may have.
If you are working with a probate attorney (I hope you are), the attorney can usually send the Will and Petition to them with a cover letter that may help them understand what's going on. However, please note that the attorney will also have to tell them that the attorney does not represent them, and that they should consult their own attorneys if they have questions about the actual legal effect of the document on their rights or interests with regard to the estate.See question
My brother and I were both adopted as adults by our stepfather. Our biological father passed away a few years ago and now his mother, our biological grandmother has passed away as well. My uncle has contacted me to request that my brother and I si...
If your stepfather adopted both you and your brother, then under Georgia law you would not be legally considered to be your biological father's heirs or the heirs of anyone else in your biological father's family. Instead, you would be your new father/former stepfather's heirs. However, your biological grandmother may still have have left you something in her Will; she would have been free to do so. Also, if she lived in a state other than Georgia at her death, then you could still be considered her heirs and your biological father's heirs under the applicable laws of that state. I think most states are similar to Georgia, but there could be differences. It sounds like your biological uncle is saying that you are considered heirs (because heirs in Georgia have to consent or at least have notice before a Will can be admitted to probate here). Of course, they could just be being overly cautious. If you really want to know whether you are heirs, what you are being asked to sign, and what effect that might have on any rights or interests you might have with regard to your biological grandmother's estate, then ideally you need to find a good probate attorney in the state where her estate is located and have that attorney review the documents and the situation with you. Best wishes.See question
How can I get a copy of my uncle's will to show I am the executor? I have lost my copy.
If you are actually the Executor (and not just nominated as the Executor), then that means the Will was already admitted to probate and the probate court can provide you with a copy of the Will. If you are nominated in the Will as the Executor, but the Will has not yet been admitted to probate, then you don't need a copy, you need the original. The first place to begin in trying to find the original is to go through the decedent's possessions, including any bank safe deposit boxes or other storage places he had access to. If no original Will turns up, then the next step is often to try to contact any attorney who the deceased person may have used to create his Will, to see if the attorney either has the original or has any information on where it was to be kept. If no original can be found, then you have a more difficult issue: Georgia law presumes that the person who wrote a Will destroyed it with the intent to revoke the Will be doing so, if that person had possession of the original Will before his death and the original cannot be located after that person's death. If the original can't be found but the family (or a proposed fiduciary or beneficiary) believes that the original was lost, and that the deceased person didn't intend to revoke it, or believes that someone else other than the deceased person may have destroyed the original in an attempt to prevent it from taking effect, then a copy of the Will can be offered for probate. However, that is an uphill battle and, if the person trying to offer the copy of the Will for probate can't prove with fairly good evidence that there is some reason to think that the original wasn't intentionally revoked by the deceased person, then the presumption may be allowed to prevail. Also, if no copy of the Will can be found, then even trying to probate a copy of the Will may not be possible.
If you are fairly sure that there is an original Will out there that names you as the Executor, and you have an idea who might have it, then you should ask them to produce it. If you suspect someone may have it but they aren't willing to turn it over, then you may have to petition the probate court to have them force the person who is holding it to turn it over. If you aren't even sure whether there is an original Will available, then it may make sense to seek appointment as the Administrator (or Temporary Administrator) of your uncle's estate, if you have standing to do so.
Whatever you decide to do, however, I strongly urge you to find an experienced probate attorney to help you assess the situation and figure out what the next steps can be or should be. When you have a situation where there may or may not be a Will, it can get complicated fast, and if you are trying to act as the fiduciary you may be putting yourself at personal risk if you handle anything incorrectly.
Best wishes to you.See question
In court order it states that "the father claims child first year and every other year the mother has right to claim son as a fependent for all purposes , including state and federal tax returns . The mother waives her right to the dependency exem...
I strongly recommend that you get an actual attorney with income tax background (or even a really good, tax-focused CPA) to review the actual language in the agreement, because without seeing the actual document no professional is going to be able to give you a real answer about what it says. However, based on what you've stated the document says, it sounds like the father claims the child in year 1 of the arrangement, and that after that first year the mother is allowed to claim the child. If that is correct, then if the mother tries to claim the child for year 1, and the father does, too, the mother may end up with IRS difficulties if the IRS audits either parent and the father can prove that he was entitled to claim the child under their agreement. For other years, however, if the agreement allows the mother to claim the child, then she should be able to under the facts you state.See question
My brother is the executor of my father's will and he has not probated it in 6 years. He is keeping me from a farm in Florida and a 200-acre farm in Georgia out of spite.
There's not a set deadline, but it does sound like your brother may not be handling things correctly. For one thing, even if he believes that there are no assets in your father's probate estate for the Will to control, Georgia law requires that the original Will be filed for informational purposes only with the appropriate probate court within a "reasonable time" after the death of the person who wrote the Will. If he hasn't at least done that, then he's in violation of state law (assuming that your father's principal residence was in Georgia).
Unfortunately, you may need to force your brother to produce the Will, and you may also need to force him to provide information, if he's been refusing to do so for this long. Please talk to an attorney who has estate litigation experience to explore the situation, your options, and a potential cost vs. potential benefit analysis. There are options, but they won't be ones you can easily take on your own.
Best wishes to you.See question