Estate Law Questions? Ask an Estate Lawyer.
Good morning. I am very sorry to hear of this distressful situation. Your situation is both legal and practical. From the legal standpoint no one has authority to distribute a person's belongings prior to their death. But that is often the case. Being a caregiver or being named as executor in a will does not give one any authority over the living person with regard to their property. All these things are governed technically by probate law, through the administration of the person's estate. On the practical side however, there are very real limitations as to what a family member such as yourself can do about situation that you described. Court battles are very stressful even to people who were in tip-top physical, mental and financial condition. I hope you can convince your sister to permit your visitation with your father during his last days. You may perhaps appeal to one of your other siblings to intervene on your behalf. Later, you might consider approaching other family members with regard to things that you would like to have for yourself or your children which have been given to them. I don't know your family at all, so I cannot predict what success you will have, but that would be my suggestion as opposed to trying to take some court action with regard to property that has reasonably small economic value. Remember, you and your husband and children must go on with life , and your father would not want you or them to overreact to his passing. I wish you the best of luck.
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