Fort Worth, TX asked in Federal Crimes, Wrongful Death, Elder Law and Probate for Louisiana

Q: If the now deceased, added a stepchild to their bank account, does that person have rights to spend after death?

The non adopted stepchild has been reported to state authorities for neglect, exploitation of my elder family member whom died with the case still open. Death was 3 months ago. We the family a still waiting on answers from EPS, but afraid this stepchild has not only contributed to his death, but still acting as only living relative & gotten away with something cruel & vile. This stepchild was from a previous marriage & my elder has been widowed over 15 years now During the following years my elder added the stepchild as an authorized user while alive, as a trusted person in the home. Clearly misusing funds far before death & presumed after. Sadly this stepchild is also the executor to the will & still posing as a single heir & claiming my elder has no family. There is immense emotional distress from unjust death & circumstances & not sure how to protect any further abuse. My elder had no POA. Does this stepchild have rights touse bank funds, as an approved account user before death?

3 Lawyer Answers
Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst
PREMIUM
Answered
  • Probate Lawyer
  • Crossville, TN

A: These wrongs have remedies but you need to hire an attorney without delay to pursue them. Yes, as far as the bank is concerned the stepchild can drain the account. But a court can stop that. You must act quickly.

Ellen Cronin Badeaux
Ellen Cronin Badeaux
Answered
  • Covington, LA
  • Licensed in Louisiana

A: You need to hire a successions attorney immediately to assert your rights.

Christie Tournet
Christie Tournet
Answered
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Mandeville, LA
  • Licensed in Louisiana

A: The way to attempt to put a halt on misuse of funds and determine inheritance -either by a valid Will or default intestacy laws is to open succession.

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