James G. Ahlberg's answer You need to contact an attorney and get a prenuptial agreement prepared setting forth whatever your agreement is. In conjunction with the prenuptial agreement, consider buying the house BEFORE you get married, putting it only in your name, and keeping it only in your name. This should be discussed and coordinated with the attorney who draws up the prenuptial agreement.
Steve McCann's answer The answer to your question is dependent on specific facts that are not provided here, such as the type of deed, the names on the deed, who has made majority of the payments, etc... As such, I recommend you organize everything in your possession regarding this matter, including the property address and PIN, and consult with an attorney individually to explore your options.
James G. Ahlberg's answer You can show up on your own, though your odds of success should increase if you have an attorney. If your brother has an attorney, you should definitely have one. If you hire an attorney, bring him or her a copy of the will to review when you meet.
Stephanie Sexauer's answer Heirs don't pay estate taxes; the estate itself might pay estate tax, if the estate exceeds $11,180,000.00 in 2018. The estate may also be subject to income tax if the Decedent earned income that year (the same way a person pays their own income tax each year), or other taxes. Please note, you should consult with an estate planning attorney to clarify this question, as it was vague. This is not legal advice and we have not established an attorney/client relationship.
James G. Ahlberg's answer This is more complicated than you realize. No one can answer your question without knowing who the owner of the house was at the time of her death, how the title was held (Life estate? Joint tenancy with someone? Tenancy in common with someone?), whether your mother left a will or not, etc. Gather any documents you can find dealing with the matter and make an appointment with a lawyer.
Richard Winblad's answer Your state probably provides remedies though the courts if a Trustee is uncooperative. These may include requiring that you be shown the trust and/or removal of a trustee. You will need the help of an experienced Illinois attorney.
T. J. Jesky's answer In Illinois trusts are regulated by the Illinois Trusts and Trustees Act (see: 760 ILCS 5/1). There is no statutory provision in the Trusts and Trustees Act that gives the trustee a specific time period in which to provide a copy of the trust to a beneficiary. It also depends on the type of beneficiary making the request. Income beneficiaries are different than remainder beneficiaries and so are the fiduciary duties incumbent on the trustee.
Jeremy Wang's answer Sorry to hear about the passing of your father. If your father quitclaimed the house over to his girlfriend your father no longer owned title to the property when he passed - that is unless you can show the transfer was done under duress, or undue influence, or perhaps maybe even fraud.
If your father left a will - he would have most likely left a copy to someone who he trusted the most to handle the estate. If that was his girlfriend then she has a duty to open up a probate and enter...
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