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Attorney 1
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Recently my mother, then my father passed away. His name is

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Recently my mother, then my father passed away. His name is XXXXX XXXXX deed to his parents land along with his 3 sisters. What legal rights do my brothers and sisters have. His sisters have said since he worked and made a living from the land they feel he has already received his inheritance. They told us they would give us seven acres to split between us. But they want us to sign a paper, I guess, to take our father's name off the deed so when the rest of the land is sold, we would receive nothing more. The people that we have discussed this with think there is something fishy going on. One big concern is my brother's business, previously my father's, is located on this land. Also, since my father has passed would our names be added to the deed and change from 4 holders to 9 holder since there are six of us children. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Jen
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Attorney 1 replied 3 years ago.

Attorney 1 :

Hello, and welcome to JustAnswer! I am preparing your response. Please remain online for a few moments, so you can get your answer right away.

Attorney 1 :

If your father left a will, who gets what will be set forth in the will.

Attorney 1 :

If no will, please see the following, for distribution of your father's property:

Attorney 1 :

A person who dies without a will in Pennsylvania is said to have died “intestate.” The laws of Intestate Succession govern the disposition of a person’s property if he or she dies without a will, or if all of his or her property is not disbursed pursuant to a will. The Pennsylvania laws of Intestate Succession are designed to protect both the surviving spouse and children (if any). In addition to providing for spouses and children, the Pennsylvania laws of Intestate Succession may also provide for a decedent’s parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, and their children and grandchildren under certain conditions.

The starting point is if the spouse of the decedent survives the decedent, the amount of property that the decedent ultimately receives is dependent upon which other relatives survive the decedent. So, who takes property and other assets pursuant to the Pennsylvania law of Intestate Succession? The law can be summarized as follows:

No Surviving Children
If the decedent was survived by his or her spouse and had no surviving children or parents at the time of death, the surviving spouse receives the decedent’s entire estate. If the decedent was survived by his or her spouse and one or both parents, the surviving spouse is entitled to the first $30,000.00 of the estate, plus one-half of the remaining estate. The decedent’s parents’ share of the estate is discussed below.

Surviving Children
If the decedent was survived by his or her spouse and had surviving children, all of whom were also the surviving spouse’s children, the surviving spouse receives the first $30,000.00 of the estate, plus one-half of the remaining estate. However, if the decedent was survived by his or her spouse, and at least one of the decedent’s surviving children were not also the surviving spouse’s child, the surviving spouse is limited to one-half of the estate. The reason that the surviving spouse receives less if one of the surviving children is not also a child of the surviving spouse is because the law presumes that a surviving spouse will care for his or her own children, but not necessarily those of the decedent.

No Surviving Spouse
What happens if the decedent is not survived by his or her spouse or the surviving spouse is not entitled to take everything in the estate? Pennsylvania’s Intestate Succession law provides as follows for the remaining share:

1. Children. First to the children of the decedent.

2. Parents. If no children survive the decedent, the decedent’s parents share equally. If only one parent survives the decedent, the surviving parent takes the entire estate. If the decedent dies with a surviving spouse, the surviving parents are also entitled to take one-half of the estate remaining after the surviving spouse takes the initial $30,000.00 of the estate and one-half of the remaining estate.

3. Brother, Sister or their Children. If no children or parents survive the decedent, the estate will be distributed to the children of the decedent’s parents (the decedent’s siblings and their children).

4. Grandparents. If no siblings survive the decedent, then the grandparents of the decedent shall receive, one-half to the paternal grandparents and one-half to the maternal grandparents and their children.

5. Uncles, Aunts, and Their Children and Grandchildren. If no grandparents survive the decedent, the estate is distributed to the decedent’s uncles, aunts, and their children and grandchildren.

6. Commonwealth. If no one mentioned above survives, then the estate goes to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

It is important to note that will substitutes such as joint tenancy property, life insurance payable to specific persons, bank accounts with specific beneficiaries and the like will pass in accordance with their terms and will not be a part of the decedent’s estate to be distributed pursuant to the laws of Intestate Succession.

Attorney 1 :

If you need more information, just let me know.


Best of luck!
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Customer:

Do you think each of my dads children are entitled to an equal share as his sisters. Or one share to be split between us six ways?

Attorney 1 :

How many of his three sisters are alive, and how many children did each have? Ar those children alive?

Customer:

All his sisters still alive. They have six children between them. But just dad and his sister's name on deed.

Attorney 1 :

You, your brothers and your sisters will share whatever interest your dad had at the time of his death.

Attorney 1 :

You will each get an equal share.

Attorney 1 :

No cousins, uncles or friends are entitled to your father's share without a will.

Attorney 1 :


If I have answered your question, please remember to click "ACCEPT."

Customer:

Is there a specific law that states this that we could bring up.

Attorney 1 :

Since his sisters are still alive, whether you and your siblings are entitled to anything at all will depend on how the property is held. Does the deed indicate joint tenancy or tenancy in common?

Customer:

That I don't don't know. We are going into this blind and trying to get a leg to stand on.

Attorney 1 :

Joint tenancy creates a right of survivorship, meaning that your dad's sisters will share the house after he dies, and the last remaining sibling owns it all.

Attorney 1 :

If the property is held as tenants in common, your dad's share passes to you and your siblings, equally.

Attorney 1 :

If you need more information, just let me know.


Best of luck!
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Customer:

Would this info be found on the deed?

Attorney 1 :

The Pennsylvania laws of succession outline exactly this. They can be found here:

Attorney 1 :

http://law.justia.com/codes/pennsylvania/2010/title-20/chapter-21/

Attorney 1 :

If I have answered your question, please remember to click "ACCEPT."

Attorney 1 :

Yes, the manner in which title is held is listed on the deed.

Customer:

Thank you this will at least give us a starting point.

Attorney 1, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 1941
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