Q: Can My Mother sue my uncle to pay the bills and debts left since his passing in reference to his business?
Father passed away from Covid in April, he left a handwritten will which stated that my Uncle was the beneficiary of his bank account, and he was to distribute the money equally between My mother , my brother and myself. My father has left a business and since we trusted my uncle would do the right thing instead having to go to court,but he went to the bank withdrew the money(I live in ny and he lives in Florida) from the account, after waiting a couple of days he is now refusing to pay bills that my father has left. My mother whom is still married to my father, we really do not want to get stuck with all these bills with no means to pay, while his 75 year old brother refuses to pay anything. My family paid for the funeral out of pocket everything, while his older brother help to do nothing. I guess my question would be what would be the next step.
A: This should be posted in the Estates and Trusts section. However, in general, since your father died in NY, NY has jurisdiction. In NY, a handwritten will is not usually legal. You would have to start a proceeding in the Surrogates court where your father resided. As part of that proceeding, your uncle can be required to give back all of the money that was taken. You should see an attorney ASAP to start the proceeding.
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