My question involves estate proceedings in the state of: California
My mother died in August of 2005. Her illness turned terminal very quickly, and prior to that she didn't want to discuss the possibility of her death. So she had no will. Her only intentions were a comment made to myself in front of her boyfriend that she was "leaving everything" to me.
There are two kids involved. Myself and my sister. Shortly after she died, my sister made the comment that she'd like some of her jewelry and that was it.
That was really the only time we ever spoke of it. Her and I had both made the comment in 2006 that we needed to go through our mother's possessions to see what was in it, but that was it. In 2007, she moved in with myself and our mother's boyfriend from when she was alive. She made no comment about wanting any of our mother's possessions nor any attempt at taking anything.
She moved out in March of 2008 without having made any comments about anything regarding what our mother had left.
In August of 2008 she stopped speaking to me. We were all on a "family plan" for cellphones. Herself, myself, her boyfriend, and our mother's boyfriend from when she was alive. She stopped speaking to me because he (mother's significant other) had been frustrated that her and her boyfriend were not paying their share of the bill and asked me to tell them that they needed to pay. I haven't heard from her since then.
At no time have I ever said "you can't have anything" or anything like that. I would prefer a 50/50 split of everything.
So I'm wondering what sort of laws or if there is a statute of limitations on this sort of thing? She had ample time and opportunity to take whatever she wanted and I wouldn't have objected to anything, as long as it was 50/50. It's been well over five years since our mother has passed. Her possessions are still here. Would it be considered abandoned property? What about storing it for so long? Thats not my question, thats actually our mother's boyfriend's question.
Like I said, I prefer a 50/50 split. I have no problem with her at all. However, she still seems to be upset with me after almost two and a half years of not speaking to me, upset with me for being the messenger. So I just want to know what my rights (and the property owner rights) if she tries to take any legal steps rather than just talking to me and finding out I'm more than willing to split things in half.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I don't necessarily have the time to get a free consultation with an attorney because I'm now helping take care of him because of an illness.