Q: My sister died intestate. Can your lawyer represent her destitute son to settle her estate?
He is not mentally able to handle her estate, nor is his brother (who is also homeless).
Yes, a lawyer can represent a person with diminished mental capacity, if the person consents. Under the rules of ethics a lawyer should take whatever steps are necessary to allow a person with diminished capacity to participate in the representation as much as they are capable of doing.
A lawyer who would represent one of the sons will probably want to meet with him before agreeing to represent him, so the lawyer can get a feel for what the son's mental and communication abilities are. The lawyer will also want to make sure that the son actually wants to hire the lawyer, understands what the lawyer will do, understands what the lawyer will need from him so the lawyer can do his or her job, and also understands how the lawyer will be paid. The lawyer will probably want him to sign a written engagement agreement. If that is something you think one of the sons would want to do, then I recommend that you have one of the sons contact a local probate lawyer for an in-person consult.
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I'm sorry to hear of your loss.
Mr Harris is correct, but it seems like you're trying to get a lawyer to undergo representation via the website. That isn't how this works.
You need to work with the lawyer to RETAIN services, and that involves some phone calls and meetings.
Assuming this is in Livingston County Probate, many of us (including me) practice there, but you'll need to call to make an appointment to review the whole situation. What did the deceased own, how was it titled, is there real estate involved and where is that, where did the deceased reside at the time of her passing, etc. SOMEtimes probate doesn't make sense when all the facts are in, sometimes there are other ways to handle things, and sometimes you need to be prepared for 'unintended consequences' if probate is started. It is all far more complicated than the 'one trick ponies' imply, and at the same time, it is often easier and less expensive than they imply too.
Facts matter, and so does that initial appointment to review the facts. Call around and get a couple of appointments to review terms and what to expect.
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