Q: My ex husband in Texas pass away. He has 3 adult children and they cannot find a will. His dad hold the mortgage on the
house. Dad purchased house for son & daughters, son was supposed to pay on it for 10 years then get a note to pay it off in his own name. He got sick about the time the note was due. So we know the house should default back to his dad. Question, can his dad take actions to put locks on the house to lock them out without any notification? They still have possessions in the home. We cannot afford a probate attorney, What happens? This is not a big estate. He didn't have much. Please help. The dad is wants the money from selling the house. How long do the girls have? Thank you.
A: You need to see if there was a written contract. There are many other questions that need to be answered. Check with the county clerk to see if they have a copy of the will. Sometimes a copy of the will can be found in a safe deposit box at the bank. If you know of the attorney who prepared the will then that attorney may have a copy. If you know of an attorney he used before then that attorney may know of the attorney who prepared the will. If you don't find a will then the heirs will need an attorney to file an application to determine heirship. However that takes longer and is more expensive than probating an estate with a will. If the estate is worth less than $75,000 then a small estate affidavit may be a possibility. That is much cheaper and does not take as long as the other two options, assuming the pandemic does not delay the process too much. Ultimately you should speak to an attorney with experience in contract law, real estate law, probate/estate administration, and litigation. Unfortunately that will cost some money. However some attorneys offer payment plans. You should speak to more than one attorney and weigh your options as not all are created equal.
Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.
The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.
Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.