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David M. Pyke

David Pyke’s Answers

937 total


  • Am I entitled to her last wishes of her will? 1 doctor from Texas, 1 doctor in OK, wrote that she was competent to make her own

    I was adopted from Korea. My adopted mother's parents & I had a close relationship. Their son & daughter in law had POA, to pay bills when my grandparents started traveling. They had a irrevocable trust MADE up, had the grandparents sign it wo com...

    David’s Answer

    It is unclear what are the exact facts and I will restrain from giving an answer; however, if you have a potential will contest, attorneys often take such cases on contingency. The case will need to be filed where the grandparents lived. You need to schedule a face-to-face appointment with an attorney to review your facts and determine whether the attorney might want to accept the case on contingency. In the meantime, I would recommend not posting on Avvo or any other site your fact situation. What you say in these forums is not confidential and your situation is unique enough that the comments would almost certainly be traced back to you.

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  • I want to know if I have a case against my sister and if worth pursuing with litigation and the statutute of limitations?

    My brother and I are in a estate dispute with my sister. She has kept the bank account that unknown to me was setup as a JWTROS. She was added as a signer only I thought. The probate attorney looked over the paperwork my sister brought in to her o...

    David’s Answer

    The analysis of such a case can't be done in the abstract. Many factors determine whether the case is strong or weak. You identify many factors that seriously strengthen the case (Chase didn't witness your mother signing the account; your mother was very ill). Another factor is the size of the account at issue. Legal fees may not be recoverable in such litigation, such you must weigh the size of the recovery vs the cost and consider the likelihood of success. You need to meet with an attorney to review these factors. Pick an experienced probate attorney in the area where your mother passed away since venue will be in that county.

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  • How do I change Deed of house to my name?

    Wife died with no will. Need to get Deed to house in my name. House was bought while married. Mortgage company is letting me assume the loan in my name.

    David’s Answer

    You will need to bring an heirship application to determine ownership of the home. You need to consult with an attorney to determine all of the heirship facts and whether you are the sole heir. Please refer to the link, attached, which will help you determine the heirship.

    You will need an attorney.

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  • I do I keep from owning the house my mom willed me? Will has not been probated.

    Mom died almost 3 years ago. She left me her house in the will. The will has not been probated yet. I do not want the house or to have anything to do with it. How do I give it to my siblings? I live in Michigan, house is in southern Texas. Sibling...

    David’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    You have several options. You can disclaim your interest in the estate and not receive the house or anything else. You also can probate the will, obtain legal title, and then give the house away or sell it. I would ask, "why don't you want the house" and then determine your best option from there.

    Call a lawyer in the McAllen community to help you.

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  • Does the estate of my husband's first wife have claim to part of his insurance proceeds and/or retirement account?

    My husband's first wife passed away 1995. Her estate was settled 2001. We married 2001. He passed away 2015. Estate attorney is telling me that part of his insurance policy proceeds and retirement account (even though I am sole beneficiary) go...

    David’s Answer

    That sounds like a very surprising result and you need to obtain the beneficiary designations and have them reviewed by an attorney. Normally, death benefit pays to the beneficiary, who must herself be living. If not, it is payable to a successor beneficiary. If there is no successor, it pays to the Estate of, in this case, your husband. The 401k would be handled in a very similar nature. Neither necessarily follow the will, but reverting the deceased's spouse's estate is not a result I have seen.

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  • What do I need to do in order to sell the property?

    My mom died and left the trust in my name. I lost it and can't sell the home nor do I know the lawyer who wrote it. I've looked everywhere, banks, courts. Still no trust. What should I do?

    David’s Answer

    if the property was deeded to the trust, it is very possible that the title company also recorded the trust. Have you checked the real property records? If not, it is possible to seek a declaration of termination of trust or modification of trust since the original document can't be located. You will need the assistance of a trust attorney.

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  • Is there any way to prove any of this? How can we make her produce the will?

    our father was quite well off when he remarried 10 years ago. He passed away recently. Now his wife says there is no will and the money is gone. She pawned his expensive guns, plus she is a felon. We were told she could not do this as a felon....

    David’s Answer

    First, you need someone appointed as administrator or executor. You will open probate, seek to compel production of the will, if it exists, and then appoint an administrator or executor. That person can subpoena records, investigate accounts, and sue to recover accounts if appropriate. You need to hire an attorney where your father was living at the time of his death, because that is where probate must be opened.

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  • Will a simple letter written by me about p.o.a and last will and testament, hold up?

    just asking

    David’s Answer

    Your question is somewhat unclear, but I assume you are saying is a "letter" you wrote sufficient as a power of attorney and a will. As to the power of attorney, I would say, almost certainly not. The power of attorney should be in a prescribed form that financial institutions readily accept. The Legislature has adopted a form Durable (Financial) power of attorney that should be used in most cases. As to a will, it may work, but why are you avoiding professional advice? For a letter to work, it must say it is a will, state an intent to dispose your property and to whom, and be entirely in your own handwriting. But, your family will thank you if you hire an attorney.

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  • Do I need a new Advance Directive if information has changed?

    I have an Advance Directive that I signed in 2010; however, some of the information has changed. The address of my first alternate agent has changed and my second alternate's last names as well as her address has changed. Do I need a new Advance D...

    David’s Answer

    It might be better to redo it, but the change in addresses does not affect the validity. The change in names would have to be proven by the agent, so it is better to update.

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  • Do I need to go to court in TX if I've already received guardianship of my mother in MO?

    I went to court when i lived in MO and was appointed my mothers guardian as she in considered incapacitated. For the first 3 years she was actually doing well enough to live on her and I rarely had to intervene. Within the last year I have had to ...

    David’s Answer

    The lawyer was half right. You need to certify the Missouri guardianship in Texas and be accepted by a Texas Court. You need a lawyer's help to do it. It is much simpler that starting guardianship from the outset, however.

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