Dallas, TX asked in Public Benefits and Probate for North Carolina

Q: My estranged father died and became ward of the state. What do I do?

He wasn’t married and my sister isn’t doing anything about it. It’s been 6 weeks and I just found out. What are my responsibilities as his daughter? Or since he’s a ward of the state do I have responsibilities? Should I claim his ashes or do I then force myself into a position of executor?

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1 Lawyer Answer

Sara W. Harrington

Answered
  • Probate Lawyer
  • Chapel Hill, NC
  • Licensed in North Carolina

A: If your father was a ward of the state, someone should have been serving as his guardian or social worker. You might want to contact the agency who was taking responsibility for him to find out about the disposition of his remains. Also, if he was a ward of the state, there is probably no estate to administer, but he may have some personal items that the family can claim. The best thing to do is to contact the guardian or agency and go from there.

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