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Roger, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 30895
Experience:  BV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell; SuperLawyer rating by Thompson-Reuters
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I need to subpoena records (agreement and for records of ...

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I need to subpoena records (agreement and for records of care) from two healthcare agencies who cared for my mother to her death. I had general power of attorney and power of attorney for health care but the agencies are saying power of attorney ended when my mother died. I need the records to aid in a case of negligence and theft involving one or both of the healthcare agencies. How can I get a subpoena?

It is correct that the power of attorney expired at your mother's death. In order to subpoena documents, commonly referred to as a "subpoena duces tecum", you must have an open lawsuit because the clerk of the court actually issues the subpoena. If there is a pending lawsuit, it's easy. If not, you cannot "subpoena" the records. However, the personal representative of your mother's estate (an executor, for example) can request the documents with proof of letters testimentary or other forms of authority.

Please feel free to ask any follow ups.

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Reply to Adam Kirk's Post: I am also the executor of the estate which is set forth in a First Amended Trust. Do I have to initiate a lawsuit to get the subpoena if I am the executor of the estate?
IF the estate is open, you can issue a subpoena duces tecum through the estate suit. Just have your attorney draft it and get it to the clerk for issuance. From there, it has to be served on the entity from which records are sought just like a summons. In most jurisdictions, the entity has 10 days to respond. IF the estate is not open, you can issue the subpoena after opening the estate during probate.
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Reply to Adam Kirk's Post: The estate did not go through probate as it was in a trust. The time to contest the trust has expired. What can I do? Thanks.
If no estate was ever opened and there is no suit pending, then you cannot subpoena the documents. You may be able to request the informaiton under the Freedom of Information Act. However, it is likely that you will be denied when seeking the type of documents you want. Your best bet is to get an attorney involved to take a look at your potential case, and if there is enough there, file suit. At that point, you can subpoena anything you want to.
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