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Texas Probate Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Texas on
Q: My Grandfather passed away in 2018 - His assets were split 3 ways between my Mom, Uncle and Aunt. My Mom was in the

process of setting up a will and living trust and then passed away (None of her Assets were put in the trust in time). My father is still with us but nothing was in his name. We are still trying to locate all the assets. My Father has an estate attorney involved and has filed for probate. But... Read more »

Terry Lynn Garrett
Terry Lynn Garrett answered on Jul 6, 2020

In Texas inherited property is always separate property. It passes to the spouse if all children of the deceased are also children of the surviving spouse. The children only have a share if there are children of the deceased who are not children of the surviving spouse.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: TRYING TO FILL OUT SMALL ESTATE PAPERWORK AN NEED HELP
Terry Lynn Garrett
Terry Lynn Garrett answered on Jun 29, 2020

When people try to complete these on their own, half are rejected. There are some persnicketty, non-obvious points. When people use a lawyer, 90% are accepted. A word to the wise?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Family Law and Probate for Texas on
Q: My minor son's father died 5.5 years ago. No will. We lived as a family, but were not legally married.

The estate was probated into my minor son's name for him to obtain at the age of 18. My question is: can I withdraw the funds on the scope that I, as his BIOLOGICAL Mother (only surviving natural parent) in which he lives with and I have SOLE responsibility for, believe those funds provide the... Read more »

Terry Lynn Garrett
Terry Lynn Garrett answered on Jun 29, 2020

As a parent, you have a duty to provide food, shelter and medical care for your child. You do not have a right to use his inheritance for these. You can apply to the court to receive reimbursement or funds for things which a parent is not legally obligated to provide: summer camp, music lessons,... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: My sister died and before her estate could be probated to her son, my nephew, he died.

I am filing to be Executor and received a huge bill from criminal attorney (hired in error by my nephew to help with probate). Most charges are after my nephew's death and no contract. Doesn't the lawyer's obligation terminate upon client's death?

In Texas.

Thank you

Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on Jun 28, 2020

You are required to have an attorney to probate the will and to become the executor. Your probate attorney should be able to easily help you with this. The probate attorney will probably advise you to send the criminal attorney a "permissive creditor notice." Then, even if the criminal... Read more »

3 Answers | Asked in Probate and Estate Planning for Texas on
Q: My stepmother wants me to sign a paper to relinquish my rights to my father's estate.

My dad passed away a couple of years ago she contacted me yesterday to sign a paper to relinquish my rights to his estate. The will has not been probated I asked to see a copy of the will and a suicide note and she has not replied what are my rights and can I represent myself put a complaint in... Read more »

Terry Lynn Garrett
Terry Lynn Garrett answered on Jun 25, 2020

Do not sign. Hire a probate lawyer who practices in the county in which your father lived and died to require production of the Will or, if there is none, file an Application for Determination of Heirship and Appointment of Independent Administrator. If the Will gives your stepmother more than... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Texas on
Q: Can beneficiaries of a will ask for bank account information that was joint with rights of survivorship? 5yrs. after DOD

Beneficiaries are asking for details of a bank account that was held jointly with rights of survivorship. Not with them. It passed directly upon death, as such, did not go through probate. All holdings were POD or joint w/right of survivorship. They received all of their POD monies directly from... Read more »

Terry Lynn Garrett
Terry Lynn Garrett answered on Jun 18, 2020

They can ask but there is no reason that they should expect an answer.

An account held joint with right of survivorship passes to the survivor on presentation of the death certificate. Absent a suit for elder exploitation, no one else ever had any right to the money or any right to inquire...
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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Texas on
Q: If my father just died and had no will! SIL says we will go to jail if we go there! FIL had no debt

My FIL died made me medical power of attorney no will has three at least properties that we no of mayb more but has no will what are our next steps! Also trying to plan a burial but family won’t way in options what do I do

Terry Lynn Garrett
Terry Lynn Garrett answered on Jun 15, 2020

The Medical Power of Attorney and any Durable [Financial] Power of Attorney were effective only during her lifetime.

You and any siblings can bury her. Most (maybe all) funeral homes will require agreement before cremating. If you and your siblings cannot agree, there is going to be a...
Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Elder Law and Probate for Texas on
Q: What can I do to stop my siblings from stealing everything off my mother's the legal way?

I have a bedridden mother that I take care of her home 24/7. My older sister got my mother to sign power of attorney to her without my mother realizing what she had signed. So my mother revoke that. They were selling her property without her permission and now trying to sell her home and put her... Read more »

Hon. Richard W. B. Davis
Hon. Richard W. B. Davis answered on Jun 11, 2020

You should contact an attorney about filing an Application for Guardianship to ask a Court to make you the guardian of your mother.

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: Dad and I had a joint checking account. He passed away recently. Is that account property of the estate?
Isaac Shutt
Isaac Shutt answered on Jun 4, 2020

No, not if you were "joint tenants with right of survivorship" on the account. You can ask the bank, and they should tell you. If you're not, then the account probably belongs to the Estate.

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: Was left a property by deceased father. Wife was given life estate but has not lived there in 5 years what are my rights

My father died without a will and was remarried. We went through mediation for settlement of assets. I need to know how or if I can get access to the home since my step mother is no longer living in the home. What are my legal right to the home since she does not live in the home.

Terry Lynn Garrett
Terry Lynn Garrett answered on Jun 1, 2020

She has abandoned her life estate. The home is now that of your father's children.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Texas on
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... Read more »

John Wesley Urquhart
John Wesley Urquhart answered on May 28, 2020

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... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: Can my probation officer revoke me for 1 dirty ua
Chad Zubi
Chad Zubi answered on May 27, 2020

A judge could decide to revoke your probation for one failed drug test, you are not entitled to a free pass. It is important that you adhere strictly to the terms of your probation, make the satisfaction of the terms of probation as your top priority.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: 10,000. left by our Dad over 25 years ago. One is questioning now about money. Is there a time limit on this? No will.

My father passed after the money was gone. (Before 2010). It was early 1990s when the money was put in my name. One brother said he didn't receive money and wants it now. Is there a time on how long it can be contested?

Terry Lynn Garrett
Terry Lynn Garrett answered on May 26, 2020

The statute of limitations has long since passed.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Texas on
Q: I was poa for my dad in wa state. He stayed in wa and i went to texas. He made my aunt poa and then she died. am i poa?
Hon. Richard W. B. Davis
Hon. Richard W. B. Davis answered on May 23, 2020

The answer to your question depends on the content of the Power of Attorney that your father executed in favor of your aunt. If the language states that, by signing the document, he also revokes all other Powers of Attorney, then you have no authority to act under the older Power of Attorney that... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts, Estate Planning and Probate for Texas on
Q: My fiance's dad died awhile back n left everything to his wife. My fiance's mama. He didnt have a will.just a notarized

Affadavit.which all 7 kids signed sayin was ok. Her mama later sold my wife everything about 9 years ago.then also died without a will.do other kids have a chance of taking anything away from my fiance..

Terry Lynn Garrett
Terry Lynn Garrett answered on May 20, 2020

If things were properly sold and title transferred during life, your mother could not leave them to anyone via a Will or an heirship proceeding.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Texas on
Q: If no one is contesting a will, do you need an attorney to probate it?

My mother is the only child and everything in the estate goes to her. There is no one left to contest the will.

Terry Lynn Garrett
Terry Lynn Garrett answered on May 19, 2020

The Will has no legal effect until a Court admits it to probate (proving). A lawyer is required. Please remember that without a Court proceeding, it is not known whether the Will is valid or whether there is indeed "no one left to contest it" and creditors will have difficulty... Read more »

3 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law and Probate for Texas on
Q: In texas are the probation officers supposed to give you at least 3 failed uas before they revoke you
Hon. Richard W. B. Davis
Hon. Richard W. B. Davis answered on May 18, 2020

That is a policy decision made by the Judge to whom the probation officer answers. There is no such requirement written in the law.

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Texas on
Q: My husbands dad died. My sister in law has informed him that a life insurance company has been looking for him.

We live in San Angelo, Texas and his dad lived in Trenton New Jersey.He past away almost 7 years ago and he was a retired U.S. Postal worker and retired from the Air Force He called his stepmother and she said she didn’t remember any of that information because that was almost 7 years ago. He... Read more »

Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst answered on May 14, 2020

If the insurance company is unable to find you, eventually they will escheat your insurance proceeds to the State. Probably the State of New Jersey. Every once in a while, go online with the New Jersey Secretary unclaimed property administration here:

https://www.unclaimedproperty.nj.gov/...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law and Probate for Texas on
Q: Can my probation officer extend my probation for not being able to do nipv classes due to COViD19? Waco, TX

I’m on Misdemaenor, family assault, deferred probation. All my fines and fees are paid off, I’ve passed every UA, community service done. My probation ends in September, that’ll be my year. I was suppose to start NIPV classes on March 24th but they were canceled due to COVID19. I just got off... Read more »

Kiele Linroth Pace
Kiele Linroth Pace answered on May 12, 2020

It wouldn't be the probation officer acting on their own authority, it would be something ordered by the for failing to complete the required terms. That means you could hire an attorney to argue your case but it might be less expensive to find an alternative.

For example, if the...
Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Texas on
Q: is land personal or community property

Dad recently passed without a will, my parents bought land in the 80s together but divorced in the 90s. My mother signed over her part of the land to my dad so he owned it soley. 5 years later they remarried, is the land considered his personal property since he came into the marriage the second... Read more »

Terry Lynn Garrett
Terry Lynn Garrett answered on Apr 29, 2020

It appears that it would be separate property in which she would have a life estate.

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