My sister (POA) opened accounts in her name prior to my mom's death. The accounts that she is showing in Probate court are dormant-no activity for at least 7 years. My mom received a pension check, social securty and stock dividends since my dad died 25 yrs ago. The accounts in probate court do not show these deposits and I think this money has gone into accounts that my sister opened in her name only. I believe a forensic accountant could uncover the money (hundreds of thousands) but first I need an attorney for this ante-mortem lawsuit.
We are located in Stratford and we have handled such claims, but we do not handle them on a contingent fee basis. Being that you raise the issue of a "forensic accountant" you obviously have done some research so far, and you may be aware that such an accounting can be expensive.
What you don't say is whether the estate has been settled or whether it remains pending. Has there been any action taken in the Probate Court? Has a Final Account been approved? Has there been an appeal taken from the Final Account? Who is the Fiduciary of the Estate, has there been a petition to have the Fiduciary removed?
The bottom line is, that an attorney would need to obtain and analyze a great deal more information before the chances of success can be evaluated, if it is determined that a valid claim (still) exists. The fact only "dormant" accounts were reported to the court on the Inventory and/or Final Account, may or may not, be inappropriate under the circumstances. A thorough investigation is warranted.
The information contained herein is meant for informational purposes only. It is not meant to be relied on as legal advice for any particular circumstance or situation. If you need legal advice and counsel on any matter, consult an attorney.
I take it from your question that your mom appointed your sister as attorney in fact to handle your mom's financial affairs. The probate court having jurisdiction can require an accounting from your sister of all her activities as attorney in fact. That accounting can be reviewed and challenged and if of sufficient complexity an experienced accountant might be involved in that review. Bear in mind that the accounting will cover the receipts and disbursements. Do you have some reason to think your sister didn't apply the pension, social security and stock dividends to your mother's expenses?
You also mention an ante-mortem lawsuit but don't mention any of its details, What was your mother sued for? What response was made to that lawsuit?
Apparently somethings have been done in the probate court, so a thorough answer would require the review of those documents and what ever other information you may have.
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