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Questions Answered by Ross F. Tew
2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: My mother passed away and left a will I was named the executor to estate adopted sister will not sign heirship paperwork

Is there a way to go around her will was never probated because I didn't know I had to probate the will I have also payed the property off and payed before mother died what can I do I need to sell part of my property

Ross F. Tew
Ross F. Tew answered on Jun 23, 2017

Talk to a probate attorney. He or she can advise you how to clear up title to the property. Once title is clear (either by probating the will as muniment of title or determining heirship) and your sister still refuses to agree to a sale of the property, you'll need an attorney to help you with a... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: My mother and step dad had a will. He passed and all was left to my mom. She never got her will probated and it says

after she passes it goes to 2 grandchildren. If she never probated it and has now passed away can it be contested by their children?

Ross F. Tew
Ross F. Tew answered on Jun 22, 2017

This is a fairly common situation. Take the will(s) and death certificate(s) to a probate attorney who can give you some direction. If either passed within the last four years you should be able to probate his or her will. If you are unable to get his will admitted to probate there may be issues... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: In the state of Texas is it required to probate if a Deed shows a certain value of the property to be sold or split?

I was told by a lawyer that he needed the Deed to decide if this Will needed to be legally probated and not just worked out among heirs by signing affidavit? or can't remember other word for it. Thanks

Ross F. Tew
Ross F. Tew answered on Jun 14, 2017

It probably has more to do with the type of deed and what impact the death may have had on title to the property. A deed is simple enough to procure from the County Clerk or online. I would provide the most recently recorded deed to your attorney and let him advise you further.

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: My father-in-law wants to sell un-probated property to help cover medical costs but eldest child is blocking the sale.

He failed to probate it after his first wife died. Now that he needs to sell it his oldest is making demands on sales price that would place it above market value. Can she block the sale entirely or can he sell the property and pay everyone their share?

Ross F. Tew
Ross F. Tew answered on Jun 12, 2017

Whether the property was separate or community property during their marriage, and what children they each had in and out of their marriage will dictate whether your father-in-law owns the property outright, whether he and her children share title to the property, or whether he has a marketable... Read more »

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3 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: If a holographic will is incomplete can it still be offered for probate?
Ross F. Tew
Ross F. Tew answered on Jun 2, 2017

You should contact a probate attorney and have the document reviewed. Your attorney will be able to advise you of your chances of success moving forward probating the holographic will. If your attorney cannot probate the will, he or she can explain other options such as a small estate procedure,... Read more »

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3 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Texas on
Q: An insurance company called me about policies my parents had. They asked me to fill out a Small Estate Affidavit.

I looked at it, and it says all "Distributees of the estate" have to "personally appear." My sister lives out of the country and doesn't travel. What can I do?

Ross F. Tew
Ross F. Tew answered on May 31, 2017

The personal appearance by a signer on a Small Estate Affidavit is not at a hearing, but in front of the notary who notarizes that signer's signature.

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2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law and Probate for Texas on
Q: Could my brother and I remove my other brother from the affidavit of heirship and have him evicted from my Mom's home?
Ross F. Tew
Ross F. Tew answered on May 24, 2017

Filing an untrue affidavit with the court, or recording a false document with the Clerk, can subject you civil and/or criminal punishment. A person either is or is not an heir, as inconvenient as that may be. Assuming the three of you are the only heirs and your mother was not married when she... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: my brother and ex wife hired a probate attorney concerning my fathers estate. this brother is executor.

does the attorney send assets to the executor to distribute. I have received documentation stating I am entitled to 50% of the assets.

Ross F. Tew
Ross F. Tew answered on May 23, 2017

The attorney represents your brother in his capacity as the executor of the estate. The attorney does not (or should not) represent your brother in his individual capacity as a beneficiary, and the attorney is not the personal representative of the estate.

As the Executor, your brother...
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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Texas on
Q: Hello. Husband died unexpectedly. Wrote his will down but never filed it. What's the proper procedure for me now to do?
Ross F. Tew
Ross F. Tew answered on May 23, 2017

Depending on whether debts are owed, you should either probate the will for title purposes only, which does not entail the appointment of an executor or administrator, or you need to probate the will and be appointed as the executor so you can settle creditor claims or partition estate assets among... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: What is the best thing to do when you're feeling left out and taken advantage of. Probate case in Texas

My half brother and and my late father's best friend, who was also named the executor of the will, have not kept me in the loop at all on what's going on with the Probate case, or other assets I was left half of in the will. I'm a non confrontational person, I've reached out, but just get a... Read more »

Ross F. Tew
Ross F. Tew answered on May 24, 2017

To avoid the anxiety you are experiencing, and to know that your interests are protected, you can hire an attorney to enter an appearance on your behalf. He or she would then be notified by the executor's attorney every time something is filed in the case. If it is an independent administration... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: What are the attorney fees to probate a will in Collin County?
Ross F. Tew
Ross F. Tew answered on May 17, 2017

There are several factors for your attorney to consider before he or she sets fees: whether the case is contested; whether the estate needs to be administered (debts are owed, there are assets which need to be partitioned between joint owners, etc.); the value of all the assets in the estate;... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: Where did the assets go?

My grandmother died and left a will. She had 3 living children at the time. Danny ( my uncle who had no children) Sylvia ( my aunt) and Gary (my dad). She had a survivorship clause that stated anyone who died within 90 days or the Will was probated, whichever occurs sooner shall be deemed... Read more »

Ross F. Tew
Ross F. Tew answered on May 10, 2017

You should gather the correspondence and documentation you have regarding the estate, meet with a probate attorney, and have him or her explain your options. The time that has passed since your aunt received her letters and whether she is serving as a dependent or independent personal... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: I am the executor of a probate case in Hidalgo county.I hired a search firm to find the primary heir.Nothing.What now?

Will written in 1985.I am secondary executor and heir.Primary heir was also executor.

Ross F. Tew
Ross F. Tew answered on May 2, 2017

You should speak with an attorney who handles probate matters in Texas. I cannot tell from your question whether you have probated the Will or not. If the first executor is unavailable to serve, then you can step forward and probate the Will. If you have already probated the Will and you need to... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: My husband died in 2004. He left no will. I have done no legal paperwork for probate. Am I in trouble?

We had 3 children over the age of 18, a mortgage on our house and no savings, just our checking account for month to month bills. His name is still on the deed as is mine.

Ross F. Tew
Ross F. Tew answered on Apr 23, 2017

None of the information you've provided would indicate you are in any trouble. There are different methods for determining the heirs in an estate. Where there are debts owed, other than your mortgage, you generally need an administrator appointed to settle up with the creditors. Given how long... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: My father died 5 years ago. My step mother told me the house they lived in was under my step sister's name.

We had a complicated relationship. Now they are reaching out to my brother, sister, and I for signatures because the house was really in his name and my step mom. We're in Texas. I've read his 1/2 is to be split among his children. Up until this week we didn't know there was even an "estate" to... Read more »

Ross F. Tew
Ross F. Tew answered on Apr 21, 2017

If your father passed away without a will, his 1/2 community share of the property and 2/3 of his separate property will pass to his children if he has children that are not also the children of his surviving spouse. Based on what you are saying, you and your siblings would split your father's 1/2... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: My father has passed. He did not have a will. He has no estate of value. Do I still need to go through probate court?

My father passed away in Texas in 2016. He did not have a will. He does not have an estate worth value. The kids split his belongs between us. He was not married so no spouse. i am the eldest daughter so I did his taxes for him last year and this year and recevied his last check from his job he was... Read more »

Ross F. Tew
Ross F. Tew answered on Apr 21, 2017

I agree with attorney Garrett, however, one of the items in the Small Estate Affidavit is a statement that the assets on hand, other than the homestead and exempt property, exceed the debts owed, other than debts secured by homestead or exempt property (mortgages, car notes, etc.).

What...
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1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law, Elder Law, Probate and Landlord - Tenant for Texas on
Q: Can my aunts sue me for back rent while living at my grandpa's house and taking care of him? Could I counter sue?

I've lived here for two years. Taking care my my grandpa while he's been sick. He's been on hospice for almost six months. I've heard around the family a few of my aunts want to sue me for back rent. He told me not to worry about rent or any bills as long as I take care of him and his house. Could... Read more »

Ross F. Tew
Ross F. Tew answered on Apr 19, 2017

Generally speaking, the answers to your questions are no:

No, your aunts cannot sue you for back rent if your grandfather owns his home and has invited you to stay there for whatever reason. If your aunts are the owners they may be able to have a constable remove you from the home, and...
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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: Can I file an Application for Determination of Heirship Pro Se as I am the only child and heir of Decedent in Texas?

In the Court's website it says that their are "certain exceptions" when a judge will allow Pro Se representation and goes on to say that under Exceptions - "Other actions at the discretion of the Judge."

Since I am an only child, no Will, mother died before father, do you believe the Judge... Read more »

Ross F. Tew
Ross F. Tew answered on Apr 11, 2017

You may not need a determination of heirship. There are alternatives which an attorney can help you assess and choose the right option based on the combination of assets and debts in the estate. With regards to real estate, you may need to settle both of your parents' estates in order to... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: How do I sell property, legally willed to me, that has not been probated. I own 18 of 200 acres of a family estate.

There's one person with POA. Not willing to probate because they don't want it sold. My Mother's Fam. Estate

Ross F. Tew
Ross F. Tew answered on Mar 15, 2017

A power of attorney ceases to grant authority when the person who made it passes away. The will needs to be probated within four years of her passing, or the property will pass by descent and distribution to your mother's heirs. If the executor named in the will or whoever is in possession of the... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: mom & dad are deceased & had joint will ,but never probated. Dad remarried after mom died. The will had my bro,sister,

and me as heirs. Dad's surviving wife wants to sell the house we all grew in before my dad remarried. we would like to know if we are entitled to what percentage of the sale of the house that we all lived in while growing up.

Ross F. Tew
Ross F. Tew answered on Mar 2, 2017

How long ago did your mother pass away? Did your father make another will after he remarried? Did either of your parents have children prior to or outside of their marriage? Is your father's surviving spouse probating your father's will? if not, do you have the original will your mother and... Read more »

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