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Questions Answered by Ben F Meek III
2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Arizona on
Q: How do I file an objection to set aside administration? I question the validity of my dad's will.

He was sequestered from me by my brother, a new will was produced dated 6 days before he died of cancer, specifically excluding me and naming my brother sole beneficiary and I did not receive proper notice of the hearing. My other brother, though estranged, was not listed in the will as a... Read more »

Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III answered on Apr 17, 2019

There appears to be a strong possibility of fraud or undue influence in having your father sign the will. You will need a lawyer to contest it in the probate matter. There is also a strong possibility that the estranged son is a pretermitted heir, since your father failed to name him either as a... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Missouri on
Q: My mother passed in December of 2018. I am having problems to fill out probate paper. I have no idea how to fill it out.

Its just her car. Someone please help!

Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III answered on Apr 10, 2019

Most states have "small estate" affidavits or affidavits of heirship that permit heirs to transfer car titles, obtain cash from banks or insurance companies, etc., as long as the heir will swear under oath as to certain facts such as: names and addresses of all of the decedent's... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law and Probate for Florida on
Q: My husband passed and my name was not on the mortgage loan or deed. Am I responsible for repaying the mortgage?

I was only married for 4 months. I never signed the promissory note and he acquired the home prior to our marriage. Although I am his only heir, I would like to simply walk away from the house. Can I do this without repercussion?

Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III answered on Feb 26, 2019

You are probably not liable for repaying the note and mortgage, since you didn’t sign them, though you might have to pay the loan off if you want to keep the house. Thus you can probably let the house go back to the lender, but you shouldn’t just walk away without facing the issues and... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Banking and Probate for Texas on
Q: USAA HAS LOST ORIGINAL JTWROS SIGNATURE CARDS FOR PARENTS LARGE ACCOUNTS

USAA IS ACTING LIKE "THE DOG ATE MY HOMEWORK" - THESE ACCOUNTS WERE GIVEN TO ME

VIA TOD BY MY MOTHER WHO SURVIVED MY FATHER BY ONE YEAR.

THERE IS GOING TO BE A PROBATE FIGHT OVER THESE LARGE ACCOUNTS UNLESS WE CAN

PROVE JTWROS (WHICH IS ON THE STATEMENTS SINCE... Read more »

Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III answered on Feb 21, 2019

This is a fact intensive issue that will turn on the evidence you can gather to show that her intent was to name you as TOD beneficiary. Gather every document that has to do with their dealings with USAA, their financial advisor, banks, brokerages, etc., and anyone else in the chain of... Read more »

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3 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: If a will has already been probated, how can I find out who the lawyer is to contact him?
Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III answered on Feb 15, 2019

Find out what county it was probated in and search online for access to court records of that probate court. The attorney's name will show up in the docket sheets and on his or her pleadings in the case. Good luck.

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1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law for Oklahoma on
Q: Do we have a case?

My husbands grandmother passed and her property is almost up for taxes. It is his step dad’s mother but he raised him. None of the other family want anything with us (they are druggies and we are law enforcement) and they have no funds to probate and don’t wish to. They want to mooch off of the... Read more »

Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III answered on Feb 13, 2019

There isn't enough information to determine whether your husband would end up with the property through probate. It may be simpler to keep an eye on the property and buy it at a tax sale. You might have to outbid someone but would likely get the property for a song either way. Or you may be... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate on
Q: Mother died, Court judgment was for debt against my mother that is more than her estate is worth. Are we responsible?

I am the executor of the estate, What are my responsibilities. I live in

I am the executor of the estate, what are my responsibilities?

Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III answered on Feb 13, 2019

Your mother's estate is probably answerable for her debts, but her heirs are not personally liable for those debts (unless they obligated themselves by co-signing a contract or note or something similar). The inheritances of your mother's heirs would be reduced by the payments of her... Read more »

3 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law and Probate for Texas on
Q: My mother passed away 12/29/2016, my sister is the executor of her will. She refuses to finalize the estate.

In the will, my mothers house has all the siblings as heirs. My sister wants it for her daughter. So she refuses to finalize on the estate until they can financially afford it, which leaves the house empty for the last 2 years. What can we do or say to get things finished? According to the will... Read more »

Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III answered on Jan 24, 2019

Talk to a lawyer. Forcing the executrix to close the estate and distribute it does not constitute a challenge to the Will but is simply asking that it be enforced, which does not run afowl of the 'no challenge' clause. If you are a beneficiary in the will, you can also petition the... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for California on
Q: Wife is executor and sole beneficiary of her mother. Probate almost completed, deeds being transfered. Only thing NOT

Only thing left is transfer of her mothers 2 bank accounts. Here is problem. My wife is stage 4 lung cancer, very near death and unable to complete the transfer. Can a new executor of her mothers will be appointed (there is noone else in family) or better to wait until my wife passes. Oh, and we... Read more »

Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III answered on Jan 16, 2019

Contact her lawyer for the probate matter and tell him or her the problem. They will help you. You may be able to be appointed, if you're qualified. The lawyer can tell you. Don't wait. It won't get easier. Best wishes.

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Tax Law for California on
Q: i am a heir to my aunts trust,i inherited $90K. the lawyer is requesting my ss# number. must i give it 2 him?
Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III answered on Jan 11, 2019

Ask him the purpose for his needing to know. Most likely it is so the Trust can report the distribution of funds to you on IRS Form 1099. That would be a legit reason for needing to know.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for South Carolina on
Q: My father and his sister are both on the Deed to the home he lives in. She passed away how can he get deed, no will.

She didn't have a will and he wants it solely in his name, does he need to go through probate court and get a lawyer? Or is this something he can do himself. only surviving daughter isn't wanting the property

Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III answered on Jan 10, 2019

He may not need to do anything. It depends on how they held title. If the Deed provides that dad and sister owned the property as "joint tenants with right of survivorship", then he became the sole owner by law when she died. There would be nothing to probate and no need to change... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Oklahoma on
Q: If my father has no will and owns 2 homes. One is clear one is not

We live in the paid one and he is in the one with the VA loan. Without a will can we be made to move until probate is done

Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III answered on Jan 7, 2019

I would need more information before I could answer your question.

The most important question is: How are your father's real properties titled? If he owns one or more of them as a "joint tenant with right of survivorship" and your father dies first, his co-owner will be...
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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Elder Law and Probate for New Jersey on
Q: Can a conservator in NJ be changed?

My husbands’ parents have a conservator, but he is intimidating them and bullying them. They were tricked into signing affidavits by their daughter, who is only concerned about her inheritance, saying they are incompetent. Not until after the conservator was appointed, did they know what the... Read more »

Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III answered on Jan 3, 2019

Conservatorship usually requires the consent of the wards. They need to get an attorney, if they are being abused emotionally or financially or if they gave their consent under duress or false pretenses. If they truly lack capacity, guardianship is probably the more appropriate remedy, since... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Probate on
Q: can my wife gain ownership of her deceased parents home which is behind in mortgage.

the house is in dire need of major repair. no deed will or trust was left and my wife is the eldest of the immediate children

Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III answered on Jan 3, 2019

Possibly. It depends on the title: what was the nature of her parents' title? (I'm assuming for this comment that neither of them deeded the property to anyone else and one or both of them owned the property when they died.) . If they were the sole owners as joint tenants with right of... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Probate for New York on
Q: Using CA Small Estate Affidavit to settle father's CA estate. How do we do NY Ancillary Probate for vacation home in NY?

Because there are no letters of administration with the CA Small Estate Affidavit, how do we we file with the NY Surrogate Court?

Also, since none of the executors or beneficiaries are NY State residents can we file it ourselves or are we required to use a lawyer?

Lastly, we have... Read more »

Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III answered on Jan 2, 2019

I assume from your questions that there is a valid last will and testament and that your father did not have assets in California that necessitated its being probated. Whether the Will must be probated in NY depends on the nature of your father’s real estate ownership there. For example, if... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate, Elder Law and Estate Planning for Maine on
Q: Should I contest the amount the state of Maine wants from my deceased aunts estate?

I received a letter in the mail that the state of Maine wants 89,000 from the money left after my aunt passed away.She was in a nursing home but paid a partial amount every month out of her own pocket.The state of Maine covered the rest.The letter states that I can contest this.My question is... Read more »

Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III answered on Jan 2, 2019

It's not possible to give meaningful guidance with such little information. Are these demands from the state related to Medicaid payments for your aunt's medical care? If not, what is the demand related to? If for medical bills, you would have to compare what your aunt paid, and... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce and Family Law for Oregon on
Q: Is it a criminal offense to not give money that was court ordered to your spouse?

Say a judge in a divorce case states you must sell a property and pay half to your spouse. Instead the husband takes it out of the trust, sells the property and buys another home in another state and hides it under another trust. I have judgements for all this money he owes but dont know how to... Read more »

Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III answered on Jan 2, 2019

I'm re-categorizing this as Divorce, as it relates to the divorce decree and the separation of property ordered therein.

An experienced divorce lawyer can help with asset tracking issues. The short answer to your question is that it is probably not a criminal matter but is an...
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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Indiana on
Q: My grandfather passed in April and I am the only surviving grandchild. No will has been filed with probate.

My grandfather was survived by a spouse, three children and I am the only surviving grandchild. Although my grandfather and I were close, I am estranged from his new spouse. I am also estranged from my father. I have checked with both Lake County and Porter County Courthouses (both where he lived... Read more »

Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III answered on Jan 2, 2019

There are several possible explanations for why you haven't been contacted about an inheritance. Here are some examples: Granddad left a Will but made no specific provision for you; Granddad left a will but had no property requiring probate (e.g. he owned all of his real estate as a joint... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Virginia on
Q: My father was California Resident and died in 2010. He had a Will which poured over into a trust thus avoiding probate.

The trust assets have been distributed except for a small lot of land in Virginia that is titled in his name only and was never moved to the trust. I now have a buyer for this property and I have had 5 different lawyers tell me 5 different things regarding "retitling" and selling this... Read more »

Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III answered on Dec 28, 2018

Typically, probate is required to pass title to real estate of a person who died as the sole owner. If the "pour-over" will was probated, in California, a probate in Virginia would be considered ancillary. Either way, the will probated in Virginia would transfer title to the property... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for South Carolina on
Q: My mom recently died. She only owned one car with 135,000 miles on it. So we need to go through probate?
Ben F Meek III
Ben F Meek III answered on Dec 28, 2018

Probably not. Most states have "small estate affidavits" (these documents go by many names) that permit the heirs to swear under oath as to the death of their ancestor (with a copy of the death certificate), the identity and location of the heirs, and other information. Banks, title... Read more »

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