Texas Estate Planning Questions & Answers

Q: what does she need to do now?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Texas on
Answered on Jan 21, 2019
Terry Lynn Garrett's answer
If your friend thinks she is in further need of legal representation, she should contact the local probate court. Lawyers have a form to file with the court when they take over a deceased lawyer's practice. If this is a dependent administration, there are further steps she must take. If this is an independent administration, she should at least get a Receipt and Release in exchange for the checks. She must also file the 1040 and perhaps a 1041.

Q: if my husband dies without a will can his daughter come in and take stuff out of my house that was there before.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Texas on
Answered on Jan 8, 2019
Tammy Lyn Wincott's answer
I suggest your husband have a will prepared that gives specific items to specific people if that is how he wants them to pass.

Q: What can I do if my family is keeping my trust a secret from me??

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law and Energy, Oil and Gas for Texas on
Answered on Dec 22, 2018
Terry Lynn Garrett's answer
In Texas if you are 25 or older and a current beneficiary (not someone who might receive benefits in the future), the trustee must give you an annual accounting. If you know that the trust exists and know who the trustee is and know that you are a current beneficiary and are 25 or older, you can demand an accounting and, if it is not produced, hire an attorney to file a Motion for an Order to Show Cause ordering the trustee to explain to a judge why the annual accounting has not been produced.

Q: I Don’t believe you understood my question. He’s Not Dead Yet! He is very wealthy and of course he has a will.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Family Law and Probate for Texas on
Answered on Dec 19, 2018
Terry Lynn Garrett's answer
Paternity is more easily established while a person is alive. If your daughter is a minor or disabled and you seek child support, there is a reason to seek a formal declaration of paternity and, if the father is unwilling, a paternity test.

Until the Will is submitted for probate, your daughter will not know whether she wants to contest it.

Q: My father died in the nursing home in Iowa due to my uncle's negligence

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Personal Injury, Nursing Home Abuse and Wrongful Death for Texas on
Answered on Dec 19, 2018
Terry Lynn Garrett's answer
You would need to contact an Iowa attorney.

Q: I need to know how to find the standings of a litagation and possibly estate probate case .

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation, Estate Planning, Probate and Real Estate Law for Texas on
Answered on Dec 16, 2018
Terry Lynn Garrett's answer
Check with the probate court (which may be the county court) where the estate is being probated.

Q: Who has the right of inheritance if no will and only survivors are maternal cousins or deceased spouse niece?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Texas on
Answered on Dec 8, 2018
Terry Lynn Garrett's answer
If there no spouse, parents, children or siblings survive, uncles and aunts and then first cousins by blood (not marriage) will inherit. In the right circumstances, even second cousins can inherit, as can those further removed. Ask a Texas attorney to file an Application for Determination of Heirship and Issuance of Letters of Administration.

Q: Can a family member have power of attorney over an estate if they have a felony charge on their record?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Texas on
Answered on Dec 6, 2018
Terry Lynn Garrett's answer
A Power of Attorney becomes ineffective when the person who granted it dies: you cannot act as agent for someone who, being dead, cannot give you directions. No one can use a Power of Attorney to handle an estate. An executor or administrator must be appointed by the court to handle it. That person can be a felon IF all their rights have been restored.

Someone can appoint a person with a felony conviction to be their agent under a Power of Attorney while they are alive. Today a...

Q: When a relative has guardianship over an incapacitated elder US citizen. What is the jurisdiction regarding US assets

1 Answer | Asked in Elder Law, Estate Planning and Family Law for Texas on
Answered on Dec 5, 2018
Terry Lynn Garrett's answer
If the assets are real property, the courts of the state where they are located have jurisdiction.

Q: My parents died. Fa had no will, no will 2 me. Her will probated title com say heirs have 2 sign fa portion 2 me.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Probate and Real Estate Law for Texas on
Answered on Dec 2, 2018
Terry Lynn Garrett's answer
Hire a local probate lawyer to file a suit for partition. If no one can buy everyone else out, the property must be sold. Everyone will then get their share in money.

Q: My father passed & had 2 side by side lots with houses. The smaller was to go to to my sister but Will has wrong lot #.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law and Probate for Texas on
Answered on Nov 30, 2018
Terry Lynn Garrett's answer
You could ask a probate attorney to seek a declaratory judgment correcting the scrivener's error in the Will.

If everyone is in agreement, you could file correction deeds.

Q: Dad passed away almost 4yrs ago> Step mother had will drawn up in '87 probated. What are my options?

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Texas on
Answered on Nov 14, 2018
Terry Lynn Garrett's answer
If you cannot find the more recent Will which you think exists, you will have a hard time contesting the 1987 Will. Do what you can to prove the existence of a more recent Will and contact a probate attorney who does fiduciary litigation.

Q: My father moved overseas and hasn't been in touch with my family for years.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Texas on
Answered on Nov 9, 2018
Terry Lynn Garrett's answer
If your mother survives him, she would inherit. If your stepmother and you survive him, she, you and any siblings would inherit. Separate property and community property would be treated differently. Please note that real property is governed by the law of the place where the real property is located. If your father owns real property outside of Texas, the law of that state or country, not Texas law, would govern inheritance of the real property.

Q: My father passed leaving no will. Daughter, 47, son 49. Do we have any legal rights to his personal property.

1 Answer | Asked in Probate and Estate Planning for Texas on
Answered on Oct 26, 2018
Terry Lynn Garrett's answer
No one has any right to anything until a court has ruled. The cost of probate comes out of the estate. As an heir, you can file an Application for Determination of Heirship and Issue of Letters of Independent Administration. You will need a probate attorney to do this. If all your father left was a home, up to $60,000 in personal possessions (such as clothes and furniture) and up to $75,000 in other items (such as a bank account), and all the heirs and two people who will not inherit agree...

Q: Remainderman gifts interest to life teanet. Life teanet dies. Does the estate go back to remainderman.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Texas on
Answered on Oct 23, 2018
Tammy Lyn Wincott's answer
This will depend on the language used in the deeds for the life estate and gift deed.

Q: On a will signed by all now, funds were to be released this week NOW broker is needing Letter of Testamentary?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Texas on
Answered on Oct 19, 2018
Tammy Lyn Wincott's answer
A will must be probated in Court before it is considered valid. The named executor is usually the person to apply for probate and the original will is presented to the Court. If a Court finds the will is legal then they will issue Letters Testamentary to the Executor, usually the same day. Most Courts in Texas require the Executor to have an attorney.

Q: Brother passed away my mom was beneficiary she’s deceased what steps do I need to take as his living heir (sister)

1 Answer | Asked in Probate and Estate Planning for Texas on
Answered on Oct 12, 2018
Tammy Lyn Wincott's answer
A Small Estate Affidavit must be filed in probate court. I recommend seeing a probate attorney about this as the affidavits are frequently rejected for errors (and you lose the filing fee if rejected).

Q: My brother passed away on July 10 2018 my mom was the only beneficiary on insurance policy she passed away 2 yrs ago

1 Answer | Asked in Probate and Estate Planning for Texas on
Answered on Oct 12, 2018
Tammy Lyn Wincott's answer
If there are no debts and the non-exempt assets are less than $75,000, you may be able to file a Small Estate Affidavit; otherwise, you may need a Determination of Heirship. The jurisdiction will be where your brother passed away.

Q: How do you get property deed placed in your name when there was no will

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law, Estate Planning and Probate for Texas on
Answered on Oct 12, 2018
Tammy Lyn Wincott's answer
You cannot actually get it in your name "literally" as there is no way to deed it to you; however, there are things you can do, such as, file an Affidavit of Heirship in the County Clerk's real property deeds, pursue heirship determination in probate court, small estate affidavit in probate court (providing you meet the criteria), etc.

It's best to consult with a probate attorney before attempting to do any of this on your own.

Q: How do name a person executor of my will/ estate according to Harris County, TX Probate laws. What Legal documents ?

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Texas on
Answered on Oct 10, 2018
Terry Lynn Garrett's answer
The laws are the same throughout Texas. To make sure your Will does what you want, see an estate planning attorney. To make sure your Will does not get lost, deliver it to the probate court clerks.

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