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Legal consequences of cashing inheritance check with attached 'contract' relinquishing other rights.

Santa Clara, CA |

Money is being distributed after sale of assets to all heirs. Checks were sent with statement saying that cashing the check will imply my acceptance of the revisions to the family trust and to my transfer of [other rights to property] to the family trust. Is this statement binding? I do not agree with transferring my rights to the other property, nor the revisions. Can I cash my check?

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Attorney answers 4

Posted

Not until those other issues are solved.

Asker

Posted

So you're saying cashing the check implies acceptance of the relinquishment?

Posted

No you should not cash the check and should state your objections in writing ASAP.

Asker

Posted

So you're saying cashing the check implies acceptance of the relinquishment?

Christine James

Christine James

Posted

Yes and you need to state your objections in any event to preserve them.

Asker

Posted

Based upon what case law?

Christine James

Christine James

Posted

There is no cSe law and honestly there are cases that go both ways. Do you really want to take the risk? It is a gamble that can go either way. How much is at risk and do you want to put it all on red in Vegas. Law is not black and white. What is your risk tolerance? They are hoping you cash it.

Asker

Posted

Christine, you state that there is no case law and that state that there are cases that go both ways. This statement seems to contradict itself and confuses me. In California there is clear case law on whether a statement written in the memo line of a check is binding. I am curious how you came to your conclusion that the letter and my cashing of the check would create a binding contract.

Christine James

Christine James

Posted

Case law is generally published cases. This type of case is not likely to be published but you are welcome to scour the books to find it. There is precedence for both sides. Atty Benton gave you an option but it is still a risk. If you are prepared to litigate it cash the check and take your chances. Again. Law is not always black and white and your situation is no exception.

Posted

Object to the provisions in writing and say that you are cashing the check even though you are going to object to the provisions and you reserve your rights to object to the revisions.

Posted

You should not cash the check, and you should get local counsel to advise you about your rights. There may be important deadlines that you should not miss. Please call my office if you would like to make an appointment. Our office is very close to Santa Clara.

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