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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
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    5

    Default Will and Stepchildren

    Here's the situation: My grandmother passed away 10 years ago. She left behind two children from a previous marriage, and two children from a current marriage, and a husband. The two sets of children do not get along.
    We are of the understanding that there was no will, so we assumed that everything was automatically transford to her husband, even though his name was not on the property. He since has passed away in 2002, and again we assume that everything was left to his two children as they are his "natural" children. Again, no idea if there was a will or not.
    The estate has now been sold for over one million. Can you tell me if the first two children had any legal right to the estate??

    Thank you.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    28,658

    Default Re: Will and Stepchildren

    This estate was probated? Have you attempted to look at the probate court file?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    5,438

    Default Re: Will and Stepchildren

    Quote Quoting aaron
    View Post
    This estate was probated? Have you attempted to look at the probate court file?
    What state?

    By the way, if y'all waited five years to do anything, you're probably too late.

    Probate cases have notoriously short statutes of limitations...for obvious reasons.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    5

    Default Re: Will and Stepchildren

    I have checked with the courts, and it was not in the records as they only have information when they go to probate. They told me I would have to find the lawyer that handled it, but I don't know how to find who that was. I understand that too much time has passed for any kind of inheritance, my mom is more interested in finding out if her brother and sister had devious intentions. Short of calling every lawyer in Pike County, I don't know how to get this information. Isn't there some legal paper somewhere saying if there was a will or not???

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    5,438

    Default Re: Will and Stepchildren

    Quote Quoting Jilly
    View Post
    I have checked with the courts, and it was not in the records as they only have information when they go to probate. They told me I would have to find the lawyer that handled it, but I don't know how to find who that was. I understand that too much time has passed for any kind of inheritance, my mom is more interested in finding out if her brother and sister had devious intentions. Short of calling every lawyer in Pike County, I don't know how to get this information. Isn't there some legal paper somewhere saying if there was a will or not???
    Did you read this?

    Quote Quoting aaron
    View Post
    This estate was probated? Have you attempted to look at the probate court file?
    AGAIN...what state are you in?


    I have checked with the courts, and it was not in the records as they only have information when they go to probate.

    I'm sorry but that is incomprehensible.

    What Aaron and I want to know is this:

    Did you go to the clerk of the probate court of the county where grandma lived and say, "Do you have a decedent's estate on [name of grandma]?"

    And then did you go to the clerk of the probate court of the county where stepgrandpa lived and say, "Do you have a decedent's estate on [name of stepgrandpa]?"

    Did you do either or both of those two things?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Il.(near StL,Mo.)
    Posts
    5,252

    Default Re: Will and Stepchildren

    You mentioned Pike County. Is that where your grandmother & her husband both passed away? What state is Pike County in?
    Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    8

    Default Re: Will and Stepchildren

    Quote Quoting Jilly
    View Post
    Here's the situation: My grandmother passed away 10 years ago. She left behind two children from a previous marriage, and two children from a current marriage, and a husband. The two sets of children do not get along.
    We are of the understanding that there was no will, so we assumed that everything was automatically transford to her husband, even though his name was not on the property. He since has passed away in 2002, and again we assume that everything was left to his two children as they are his "natural" children. Again, no idea if there was a will or not.
    The estate has now been sold for over one million. Can you tell me if the first two children had any legal right to the estate??

    Thank you.
    In most states if a person dies without a will not everything automatically goes to the spouse. If there was no will the children of the deceased share in the estate also. I know in the state I am in (Georgia) the spouse gets 1/3 of the estate and the remainder is divided between the spouse and children. I don't see how any property could be sold without the estate being probated as the deed would have to be in the name of person doing the selling. For that to happen something would have been transferred by the courts. Check with the probate court or whatever court is responsible for wills and estates in your area of residence. And of course the oldest two children had a right to the estate, why would they not as they were the children of the deceased?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    5

    Default Re: Will and Stepchildren

    The state is PA, and yes, I spoke with the "The Recorder of Wills and Deeds" for her county. They told me they have no record of a will. That the only way they WOULD have a record would be if it went to probate. If it did not go to Probate, then they would not have a record of it!! She then got very snippy with me (which I seem to get a lot of) and told me to go find her lawyer, he would have the information. I told her I didn't know who it was, she said that was not her problem. My question is how do I find the lawyer??? ( I am in NH)

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    28,658

    Default Re: Will and Stepchildren

    You may wish to try the state bar's lawyer referral service.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    5

    Default Re: Will and Stepchildren

    Thank you......I greatly appreciate the help!! As you can see, I have no idea what I'm doing!!

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