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Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 18732
Experience:  Attorney with experience in family law.
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hi again Lucy, you have been very helpful thankyou, update

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hi again Lucy, you have been very helpful thankyou, update on the law suit....my brothers attorney who i talked to is representing me as well which was pretty much a necessity because there was only 5 day response time to file with the court...my brother and I had huge blow up because he kept calling and driving me crazy on top of that saying i am on the hook for half the legal fees....keep in mind 100% of the actions in the complaint are things he was directly involved in...i am never mentioned in the suit other than the plantiff claims she sent me letter in the mail requesting access to the house...which is non-sense no letter was sent to me it was sent to my brother.

this all started with my aunt having to go to hospital for emergency surgery....the plantiff-Nena who we found out recently who has power of attorney changed the locks on our house where my aunt lives and didnt inform us that our aunt was in hospital where she could have passed away...she is 95 years old...my bother went to visit my aunt and couldnt get in with his key...i was paniced that my aunt might be in need of help or dead...he was able to get in the house and my aunt was gone....he later changed locks back after the gardner and neighbor said Nena was in the house daily throwing stuff away...she told the neighbor that she took all my aunts cash and jewlery....my brother changed locks to protect my aunt and posted notice on the door that my aunt is only one allowed in house without supervision.

at some point my brother called me and told me about what Nena was up to...i asked him firmly to let Nena have access to house and not to mess around...i just dont want any problems. my brother is stubborn and didnt listen to me and now i get served and getting sued for unlawful entry and detainer of house which i had no part in...i became half owner of house via my dads trust a year ago but never wanted the house to beging with...keep in mind we pay all the bills and my aunt stays there free.

my brother went to visit my aunt and Nena wouldnt even let him see her at the hospital....eventually he was able to go visit...Nena is sueing him $2,000 every time he went to see her for harrassment and elderly abuse....

I just want to settle...i want to give my share of the house to my aunt and have them get me off law suit...the house used to be my aunts untill she gave it to my mom and dad 14 years ago in case she got sick and ran out of money the house would be saved i guess...we have paid around $40,000 for bills and repairas of the house...at least my dad has ...and my brother and i have paid for it over last year...before that we gave my aunt $300 a month to pay for her perscription medicines for years.

i told my brother i want to settle and be done with it...lets just give the house back to her and be done with it....we dont need the money or the stress....my health isnt good and the stress is too much for me and i am afraid something bad might happen like a stroke...

he finally agreed to pay legal fees and fight this but i dont want to fight this...can i get legal agreement drafted that he will cover ALL legal fees and any settlement against me for just being co-trustee of said house? based on the facts i presented do you see my liability in this case for my brothers actions? even though his actions werent done in a harmful way and he was trying to protect me aunt...the plantiff is sueing me as co-trustee for pain and suffering and puitive damages $50,000 each....i dont see what damage was done but either way i wasnt involved....my question do you think i have any liability in this case based on what i am telling you? and if decide to settle by signing over my half of the house i should have my own attorney draft that agreement to drop me from the suit?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

Who actually owns the house? You're a co-trustee - who is the other one? Is it your aunt? Who is the beneficiary of the trust? And does your aunt actually have a rental agreement? Does she pay rent? Because, from what you're saying, the plaintiff's actions weren't really appropriate, either.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.


hi Lucy....my aunt owned the house 14 years ago....for reasons of saving her house if she got sick she signed it over to my mom....my mom passed and she gave it to my dad....last July 2011 my Dad passed....and he passed it on to my brother and I ....we honor my aunt and pay all the bills and she stays there for free of course....my parents have paid around $40,000 over the years for prop.tax,insurance,repairs,gardner etc...now my brother and i own the house via my dads trust....and we pay for all the expenses and she stays for free...there is no rental agreement...nothing in the trust that stipulates we have to do this....we honor our family and aunt...personally i never wanted the house...it drains me financially...before we owned house we gave my aunt $300 a month to help her for years my brother and I...since then my brother takes care of repairs....


 


my aunts friend,Nena, is the plantiff in this case..she has been paying my aunts bills for years with my aunts money of course and she has turned my aunt against us....after my dad passed Nena went to work messing with my brother yelling at him to fix things at the house...she was trying to get him to get upset so she could sue him for elderly abuse...which is a rediculous claim...


 


my brother did nothing wrong...he was trying to take care and protect my aunt...when he told me the plantiff changed the locks and he changed them back and they were fighting...i tild my brother to give key to Nena and let it go...i dont want any problems it isnt worth it....well he didnt do what i wanted....day after Thanksgiving i fet served on a 5 day response to the court for complaints i had absolutely no involvement....the riff between my brother and I is because he is on a power trip and talks down to me...he says i am paying for half of this legal fees for the mess he got into...his attorney even told me that Pete should pay to fight this...


 


 


I told my brother i am willing to give up my rights to the property and give it back to my aunt...my health is poor and i dont need this stress killing me over months if it goes that far...he couldnt believe i said that ....but that is true and it is my leverage....now my brother backed off and said he would pay for the defense and he is going to fight this with all he has...Nena is the bad person doing awful things not my brother but my brother is always working it to make it better for him....a life time of him taking care of himself and leaving me empty and hurt...


 


my main points of interest am i liable for my brother changing the locks and going into house to see if my aunt was alive...part of the suit id forcible enrty and unlawful detainer....the other half is alleged harrassment at the hospital by my brother to my aunt....being co-trustee of my dads estate in which my brother kept all my dads valuables and everything while i got nothing...am i responsible for my brothers actions at the house and away from the house? and #2 can i get a legal agreement that he will pay legal fees and state that i had no involvement in anything?

Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
You're in an interesting situation, because your aunt isn't really a tenant - you're paying her to live there, instead of the other way around. She's a guest. Her POA had no right at all to change the locks on your home, even if someone else is living there,

You're not liable for unlawful detainer or forcible entry, because you didn't do those things, and you didn't encourage or aid your brother in doing them. There's no pain and suffering allowed in unlawful detainer cases, anyway. So, whether you did anything wrong or not, she can't recover that. There's also no basis in anything you've said for damages anywhere near $50,000. I also think you have a valid argument that general landlord/tenant principles should not apply to this situation. There may be a counterclaim against her for unlawfully denying you access to what is, technically, your house.

You're definitely not liable for your brother's wrongful act of harassment. You can't control him, especially in matters that don't have anything to do with your ownership of the house.

Regarding fees, you will be held to any agreement that you make. So, if he agrees to pay all attorneys' fees and indemnify you for any damages that you incur, that's binding. If you make an agreement with your brother that you will cover half the lawyer's fees, you can't turn around and sue him for half later - the judge will hold you to the agreement. Usually, in litigation, a person

One attorney can represent co-defendants unless they have adverse interests. If you choose to drop out and settle, and that somehow affects your brother, you'll need your own lawyer. But if he can proceed without you, and your leaving does not affect his defense, the other lawyer can do it. From everything you have said to date, it sounds as if your brother's attorney is going to have a conflict of interest and should not represent both of you.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 18732
Experience: Attorney with experience in family law.
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