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Since I got your answer, I recieved a ruling from the 335th Judicial District court in Bastrop Texas, denying a petition to force the decenting heir to reimburse me. The judge cited that the claims of the decentor that they had paid taxes in the past despite they offered no proof, offset my claims for reimbursement of money spent for taxes.
I was not personally able to attend the hearing but my nephew representing me reported that my attorney failed to argue that my taxes and expenses were to get the property out of foreclousure. He also failed to mention my role as representative and the signed agreement with the other heirs recognized by the probate court. He failed to offer 30 years of receipts showing that my sister, the mother of my nephew had paid the tax since my mother's death and prior to her own death and the subsequent foreclosure. He failed to call my nephew to the stand although he could refute the opposing claims. He failed to argure that the total of the taxes since my mother death, did not equal the taxes and expenses to get the property out of foreclosure ruled as offsetting expenses.
My attorney has told me that the property is now in the hands of the receivor and technically no longer an estate and so it couldn't be sued as an estate. He also said it would be fruitless to appeal the judge's ruling because the judge would look at such a move as an affront of the judge's integrity.
When I questioned his representation, ironically he has said he is willing to terminate our lawyer client relationship and forfeit $9,000 of the outstanding balance of the $28,500 I have been charged. He argued that it was my failure to come to a consensus with the decenting heir who wanted the lions share of the estate without any responsibility for the expenses that caused the judge to rule in their favor and not his failure to offer relevant evidence and testimony.
I want every one to share equally in the expenses and the profits from my mother's estate. I need to know what if anything I can do to make this happen?
I did attend one court hearing and offered testimony. My lawyer did not ask me very much. The opposing attorney kept asking me the same question over and over, "Did I have any first hand knowledge that my deceased brother did not give my deceased sister money for taxes while they were alive" as my sister-in-law asserted. My answer was that I lived in Los Angeles and I wasn't aware of what might have or have not taken place between my sister and brother in Texas.
I did say however that in my conversations with her she did not indicate that anyone other than herself was paying property taxes and that I knew that the taxes were in my sister's name and she paid the taxes. It wasn't until after my court appearance that I was able to secure the actual 30 years of receipts and forward them to my lawyer.
My concerned is not if the taxes prior to the foreclosure of the properties should be offset. My question is if the payment to get the property out of foreclosure can be offset since there is no property to dispute without this action?
Without specifically commenting on the position of my attorney, I need to know if there is a point that the estate is dissolved before the property is sold and if this ruling prohibits me from seeking reimbursement from the estate as a whole rather than just from the decending heir? Does this ruling now give the other heirs who have signed the agreement to share the cost of getting the property out of foreclosure an argument not to honor that agreement? Can I seek payment either through a subsequent court order citing that my expenses were unique and not subject to offset claims or through the receivor if in fact there isn't an estate and he is tottaly responsible for the sale and/or claims for expenses?
Sorry to be such a pest.
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