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Questions Answered by Isaac Shutt
2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: My husband died 16 years ago. A vacant lot paid for is in both our names. Our home still being paid for is also in both

our names. All the children are grown and out of the house. There was no will. How do I get the properties in my name?

Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on Sep 19, 2020

In your questions, you state there was no will. So, you have two options. If you're going to hang on to the properties, the cheaper option is called an "affidavit of heirship." If you want to sell within the next five years or so, it might be better to do the title transfer the... Read more »

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3 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Probate and Real Estate Law for Texas on
Q: If my grandmother decides to give her house to me, what do I need to do to go about this?
Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on Sep 16, 2020

I agree with Ms. Garrett. Your grandmother could sign a deed, which would transfer the house to you. A "Ladybird" deed is often recommended in your grandmother's situation. Also, if she doesn't already have a will, she should have a will. In her will, she can leave the house... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law and Estate Planning for Texas on
Q: If 2 people, not related, buy a property together and then they both die, do their respective heirs co-own the property?
Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on Aug 17, 2020

It depends on the deed. Did the deed say they were "joint tenants with rights of survivorship"? If yes, then second-person-to-die's estate owns all of the property. If not, then each half would go to the respective persons' heirs (or will beneficiaries, if they have wills).

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: A holographic will with no assigned executor or independent administrator. How would you file the probate?
Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on Aug 5, 2020

This is called "probate with will annexed." You can still have an administrator appointed, but you'll need an attorney if you want an administrator. If you don't want or need an administrator, then you can do a "probate as muniment of title only." With muniment of... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Texas on
Q: I live in Texas and I have an special needs adult child who lives with me and requires round the clock care.

When I die can I create a will appointing a close friend to be my daughter's guardian/caregiver when I'm gone? Will my daughter's father have any say so to whom is her caregiver? Thanks

Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on Jul 27, 2020

Yes, you can. You also should establish a trust in your will for your daughter. You need to do this so that your daughter doesn't lose her governmental benefits... We don't charge anything extra for adding this type of trust into our clients' wills.

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2 Answers | Asked in Elder Law for Texas on
Q: Can a spouse have a person with dementia sign legal papers?

My father is 98 and in a nursing home. He has always been adamant that his house would go to his children. Now his wife, who has insisted for years that he Has dementia, has gotten him to give her the house. What is our recourse?

Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on Jul 17, 2020

You should definitely do something. You'll want to get an attorney that does guardianship and also estates law.

If he allegedly gave the wife the house with a deed, then you will need to do something now. If he allegedly gives her the house in the will, then you may have to wait...
Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: My sister died and before her estate could be probated to her son, my nephew, he died.

I am filing to be Executor and received a huge bill from criminal attorney (hired in error by my nephew to help with probate). Most charges are after my nephew's death and no contract. Doesn't the lawyer's obligation terminate upon client's death?

In Texas.

Thank you

Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on Jun 28, 2020

You are required to have an attorney to probate the will and to become the executor. Your probate attorney should be able to easily help you with this. The probate attorney will probably advise you to send the criminal attorney a "permissive creditor notice." Then, even if the criminal... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: Dad and I had a joint checking account. He passed away recently. Is that account property of the estate?
Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on Jun 4, 2020

No, not if you were "joint tenants with right of survivorship" on the account. You can ask the bank, and they should tell you. If you're not, then the account probably belongs to the Estate.

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2 Answers | Asked in Civil Litigation, Contracts and Estate Planning for Texas on
Q: Do I need a prenup if I am in a 12 year relationship with no plans on getting married in the near future?

We do not call each other husband and wife, no paperwork except an old rent agreement in both of our names.

Main concern is can my partner get any sort of support from me if we do split up?

Thank you

Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on May 27, 2020

YES! You should have at least a basic will. In all wills we prepare at our law office, we put in a little clause about marital status. This one sentence could save your heirs lots of expense and hassle. You should also consider a cohabitation agreement. Also, I notice you're in PA.... Read more »

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4 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Texas on
Q: I want to leave everything to my wife. But it is a large estate.....$30 million or so. Is it all tax free to her?

If I leave her everything except $2milion to 3 children, is all still free of estate tax?

Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on May 15, 2020

I agree with the prior answers. The short answer to your question is "YES," you can do this without estate tax. However, it wouldn't be automatic. You definitely need an estate planning attorney in your area to get this drawn up correctly. Doing so could literally save millions of dollars.

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Texas on
Q: Grandparents own 150 acres and a home in Texas. Gmom died 6 yrs ago & willed her 1/2 of the land to grandkids. Grandpa..

..died last yr and willed his 1/2 to 1 son only. How soon after her death could Gmoms estate be finalized and her half of land be distributed to kids? Did we have to wait until grandpa died to split all the land up and distribute to aires?

Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on May 5, 2020

Sounds like everything is ready to be distributed now. In cases like these, I think it's important to move quickly to protect your inheritance rights. There are deadlines for probating wills. Probate is the process of validating the will by a judge. This must be done for title purposes.... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: Jailbird brother won't sign to sell moms house. The other 5 of us want to sell. There was no will/probate. Can we sell?

I have affidavits of heirship, and POA from 4 of my 5 siblings (heirs). There is one heir in Jail. He was living in the house with mom when she died 6 years ago. She had no will, so he was squatting and turned it into a drug house. We missed probate. He's now been in jail a year. His drug... Read more »

Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on Apr 29, 2020

If you do find a will, you have 4 years to probate. If there's no will, then you will need to go to probate court to get an "administrator" appointed by the judge. The administrator will have the power to sell the home. The cost of going to court can be reimbursed from the sale of... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Texas on
Q: Who do I contact for trust docs if the trustee and trustor are deceased??

After my mother passed I found out that she created a trust.. Since she passed, the trustee has also passed and the firm no longer operates under the same name and I was wondering how do I go about locating these documents and who do I contact now that the trustee it's deceased also.

Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on Apr 23, 2020

If you contact a probate attorney in your area, he/she can email the local law firms to see if anyone had your mother's file. If not, then you can operate as if there's no trust document. This would mean that your mother's heirs inherit the trust assets. Assuming she wasn't... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: My brother died intestate on April 4,2020. He had no real property. Can I avoid probate?
Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on Apr 21, 2020

Definitely maybe. If he had no will, had more than $75,000, and owed less than $75,000 in creditor claims, then you could probably use a "Small Estate Affidavit." If he had a will, that's the way to go. If he had no will but he has more than $75,000, then you will do a... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: My father passed 4 years ago & I havent gone through probate court yet. Are there legal ramifications for this?
Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on Mar 29, 2020

Yes, there are. However, the legal ramifications are not insurmountable.

So, the typical deadline for probating a will in Texas is four years. However, you can probate the will as a "muniment of title" beyond the four-year deadline. Depending on your local probate court,...
Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Elder Law and Probate for Texas on
Q: If a temporary guardian settled and collected monies outside of court. Does that money go to the new guardian?

After I became a guardian. I found out the temporary guardian settled outside of court with the boarding home that was neglecting my father. I was never inform and this info was hidden from me. I found all this out on my own. My father is now deceased. Shouldn't that money have gone to the... Read more »

Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on Mar 13, 2020

You should definitely have a probate/guardianship lawyer file on your behalf. The temporary guardian should have turned the money over and should have accounted for how every dime was used.

2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: Grandma has a will leaving everything to her children. Her son died last year do his children get his half?
Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on Mar 12, 2020

It depends on the order of the deaths. If the son died before grandma, then you have to look at the alternate beneficiaries listed in grandma's will. If son died after grandma, then the son's share would probably go through the son's estate (ie, son's share would flow through the son's will).

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: If I sign and cash my inheritance check does that mean I accept it and can't press charges if I need too?

My suppose to get my Inhertitenace check this week. If I feel the check is too low and I want to look further into what the executor did, should I not cash it? Is cashing it mean I accept everything he did?

Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on Feb 14, 2020

You would probably be okay to cash the check. However, it is definitely better to have a consultation with a probate attorney. Many offer free or low-cost consultation meetings. When you meet with the attorney, bring the actual check you received in addition to all the paperwork you have... Read more »

3 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: What do I do if uncle says I receive no inheritance from grandparents, doesn’t show me the will, and hasn’t filed it?

The will supposedly went like this: If one grandparent died, the spouse gets all. Then it was divided equally among their 2 children.

However my father passed before my grandparents. When my father learned he had terminal cancer, he mentioned that my siblings and I would receive his share... Read more »

Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on Feb 12, 2020

I agree with the earlier answers. Meet with a probate attorney in the Dallas area ASAP. Many offer free or low-cost consultation meetings. We can actually look at the probate court records to see if maybe your uncle has filed something and you just didn't know. The fact that your uncle is... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: My mom passed away and she left me a large some of money, but my step dad says I have to wait until he dies? Why ?
Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on Feb 4, 2020

Your step dad may be right, but probably not. We would really need to see your mother's will or trust to see if there's any legal reason at all that you wouldn't get your inheritance right away.

If your mother had no will, then you should get your inheritance right away....
Read more »

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