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Irwin Law
Irwin Law, Attorney
Category: Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 6771
Experience:  30+ yrs. handling probate estate, wills, trust, inheritance & real estate related matters
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After I was the sole caregiver of my mother and her passing,

Customer Question

After I was the sole caregiver of my mother and her passing, my father is now very old and his health declining. My oldest sister moved him in with her without telling me, and has distributed EVERYTHING that belonged to them after 60 years of marriage to all of my brothers and other sister, nieces, nephews, etc. but only a box of greeting cards from past holidays that my mother had saved for 60 years (my sister doesn't celebrate anything, she's a Jehovah's Witness). After my mother died I became very depressed. I am suffering PTSD from that and 24 years of exposure to trauma related calls from my job as a first responder for the fire department and rarely make it to see my dad. She sent me a text to tell me it's time to day goodbye to him. I went to her house to see him, and he is in a horrible way. I had NO IDEA he was this bad! Up until a year and a half ago I was the main care giver for him and he was 100%. I got mentally sick, ptsd,whatever you want to call it and was basically absent from everyone and everything except work. Now he is days from death, she's limited my visits with him now that I'm mentally ready to see him, and she's distributed EVERYTHING he owns to her family and my brothers and other sister and herself. There are things my mom and dad wanted my daughter, grandkids, me and my husband to have and there is nothing left. What do I do? He hasn't even died and she's making his death an even more horrible memory than it has to be! I feel the only way to come to peace with this is to join my father when he goes. Since she is the executor is she allowed to do this before he is even gone?
Submitted: 3 months ago.
Category: Estate Law
Customer: replied 3 months ago.
Let me clarify...When i said 'sole caregiver' I meant along with my father. I was the only one that cared for her and then after she passed I was the only one that cared for him until 1 1/2 years ago.
Expert:  Irwin Law replied 3 months ago.

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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Expert:  Irwin Law replied 3 months ago.

Hello again. Do you have a follow-up question? If not, I hope that you will enter a positive rating for my assistance here by clicking on 3, 4, or 5. There is no additional cost to you. Thanks again for using JUST ANSWER.

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