Riverside, CA asked in Probate for California

Q: How does my son claim inheritance money left to his dad before he passed away

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2 Lawyer Answers
Gerald Barry Dorfman
Gerald Barry Dorfman
Answered
  • Probate Lawyer
  • Mill Valley, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: That will depend on a number of factors. What is the amount in question, and what was the amount of the total estate? Are there other survivors? Was the money left in a trust, or an estate, or another form, such as an account "payable on death" ? Is there a probate proceeding for the father's inheritance? Is your son a minor or an adult? Unfortunately, the situation is not necessarily simple, although it may turn out to be relatively easy. Depending on the answers to the questions here, it could be as easy as getting in touch with a trustee or administrator, or as difficult as filing a probate action in court. A consultation with a probate attorney is really the best way to get straight what your son needs.

David L. Crockett
David L. Crockett
PREMIUM
Answered
  • Probate Lawyer
  • Newport Beach, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: This is a good question and it is important to be proactive about this situation. First, you will need to see the dad's will and trust if there is one. Those documents would say what your son does and does not get to inherit. These documents should be provided by the person handling the father's estate and/or trust. Write a letter and keep a copy for making this request. Do not rely on email.

Second, you will need to obtain the documentation describing/proving the inheritance money left to the dad. That should be obtainable from the person handling that estate. You would need to determine if the inheritance money left to the dad has conditions attached. For example, was there a condition of survivorship? i.e. did the dad have to be alive to inherit?

If the inheritance money is significant then your son should retail legal counsel to figure this all out and make proper legal demands and to to court if necessary. Good luck with this.

David L. Crockett, attorney/CPA/Broker/Martindale Hubblle AV preeminent rating

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