How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Dwayne B. Your Own Question
Dwayne B.
Dwayne B., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 32342
Experience:  Began practicing law in 1992
11068102
Type Your Legal Question Here...
Dwayne B. is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

MY DAD RECENTLY PASSED I LIVE IN IL. I HAVE FARMED THE

Customer Question

HELLO,
MY DAD RECENTLY PASSED I LIVE IN IL. I HAVE FARMED THE FAMILY FARM SINCE I GRADUATED HIGH SCHOOL IN 1980.HE DIED WITHOUT A WILL,SO WERE GOING THROUGH PROBATE.FARMING WAS A VERBAL AGREEMENT EVERY YEAR.MY DAD SAID FARM IT LIKE IT,S BEEN FARMED SINCE MY GRANDPA BOUGHT IT IN 1939.WE MILKED COWS UNTILL 2003 WHEN WE QUIT AND WENT TO CROP FARMING AND I GOT AN OFF FARM JOB TO HELP SHORT COMINGS ON THE FARM INITALLY WE HAD A 50-50 AGREEMENT HE BOUGHT SEED ECT. WHEN BILLS WERE PAID WE SPLIT PROFIT.IN 2010-2011 IN ATTEMPT TO AVOID DEATH TAXES HE WAS GOING TO GIVE THE FARM TO GRANDCHILDREN.DURING THIS TIME HE CHANGED OUR AGREEMENT WICH INCLUDED MYSELF PURCHASING ALL INPUTS AND PAYING HIM WHEN WE HAD A PROFIT HE ALSO CHANGED THE THE ACCOUNT ON THE GRAIN WE SOLD FROM WARREN AND WAYNE TO WARREN OR WAYNE HAGER SAME AS HIS ONLY BANK ACCOUNTS LABELED WARREN WAYNE AND WARREN JOAN WAYNE JOAN WAS MY MOTHER WHO DIED IN 2008 ACCOUNTS WERE VERIFIED MINE BY THE BANK.I WAS ALSO TOLD AS MY DAD PAYED HOUSEHOLD BILLS IF THE FARM WAS SHORT I NEEDED TO ***** THE BALANCE TO PAY BILLS WITH MY OFF FARM JOB TO KEEP IT GOING.I ALSO OWN THE MACHINERY TO RUN THE FARM PURCHASED AT VARIOUS AUCTIONS. NOW WITH THE VERBAL AGREEMENT TO FARM IN 2014 I HELD UP MY END OF THE AGREEMENT AND TOOK CARE OF THE CROPS. I AGREED TO FARM IN 2014 AND MY DAD DIED JANUARY 11,2014 NNOW THROUGH THIS AGREEMENT WITH THE ACCOUNTS BEING WARREN OR WAYNE DO I HAVE SOLE RIGHTS TO THE CROPS SOLD AS IN HIS ONLY BANK ACCOUNTS AS SURVIVOROR DOES HIS DYING WITH NO WILL OBLIGATE TO PAY 1/3 TO EACH MY BROTHER AND SISTER FOR THE 2014 YEAR?OF COURSE I REALIZE I ALSO INCUR ALL EXPENSES.AFTER HE FOUND OUT THERE WOULD BE NO DEATH TAXES RAISED TO 5 MILLION HE WAS HAPPY AND TOLD ME HE WOULD GET THIS FIXED UP TO KEEP THE FARM TOGETHER BUT THIS WAS NOT COMPLETED AS HE GOT SICK AND DIED.I'M ASKING SO I DON,T GIVE UP ANY RIGHTS GIVEN TO ME BY MY FATHER
THANK YOU IN ADVANCE FOR LOOKING INTO THIS
WAYNE HAGER
ESTATE OF WARREN HAGER ***@******.*** (###) ###-####
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 10 months ago.

Hello and thank you for contacting us. This is Dwayne B. and I’m an expert here and looking forward to assisting you today. If at any point any of my answers aren’t clear please don’t hesitate to ask for clarification. Also, I can only answer the questions you specifically ask and based on the facts that you give so please be sure that you ask the questions you want to ask and provide all necessary facts.

DO I HAVE SOLE RIGHTS TO THE CROPS SOLD AS IN HIS ONLY BANK ACCOUNTS AS SURVIVOROR DOES HIS DYING WITH NO WILL OBLIGATE TO PAY 1/3 TO EACH MY BROTHER AND SISTER FOR THE 2014 YEAR?

Not necessarily. At the time of his death all of his assets or interest in any property immediately became vested in his "estate" a legal entity. To know what your rights to the property are you will have to open a probate and then let the probate judge decide. You can, of course, present your side of the case (you will want to use a lawyer, whether the one you hired or a different one) and the evidence of how things worked in the past can be used to prove that was the way they were supposed to work in 2015/2016.

Also, you state "ACCOUNTS WERE VERIFIED MINE BY THE BANK". You need to be aware that the bank has no authority to decide who owns the accounts and who does not so regardless of what they said the ultimate decision has to be made by the judge.

PLease ask any follow up questions in this thread.

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
THE 2 CHECKING ACCOUNTS WERE LISTED AS WARREN HAGER WAYNE HAGER AS LISTED ON THE SIGNITURE CARD AND WARREN HAGER JOAN HAGER WAYNE HAGER ON THE SECOND ACCOUNT.THEESE ACCOUNTS WERE SET UP IN THE 90'S WITH RIGHT OF SURVIVORSHIP.DOES DEATH WITHOUT WILL VOID VERBAL CONTRACT TO FARM THE LAND?I'M RESPONSIBLE FOR CROP BUT NOT FOR THE ACCOUNTS MY DAD CHANGED TO WARREN HAGER OR WAYNE HAGER?SIMILIAR TO CHECKING ACCOUNT BUT LEGALLY DIFFERENT?IF I FAILED TO HARVEST CROPS I BELIEVE I COULD BE SUED YET AM UNABLE TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THE VERBAL AGREEMENT AND ACCOUNTS SET UP BY HIM TO RUN THE FARM?DOES WARREN HAGER OR WAYNE HAGER ON THE ACCOUNT MEAN ANYTHING LEGALLY?I WOULD THINK IF HE IS NOT HERE TO CLAIM FOR THIS YEAR THE CROPS WOULD BE IN ACCORDANCE TO THE WAY HE RAN THE FARM.EVERYTHING INVOLVED WITH THE FARM IN THE PAST WAS RUN THROUGH THE ACCOUNTS LEFT TO ME
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 10 months ago.

DOES DEATH WITHOUT WILL VOID VERBAL CONTRACT TO FARM THE LAND?

No, assuming it is a valid oral contract then the contract could still be enforced. However, the best course of action is to have the probate judge affirm the contract and that way you don't spend a lot of money or effort only to be challenged later and the contract not affirmed.

The way the account is set up determines what happens to the account. Normally when an account is set up or when one is changed the bank will have the owner sign a card indicating whether the account is a joint account or a joint account with right of survivorship. A simple joint account means you both own an equal share of the bank account and when he passed away his estate would not own that share. A joint account with right of survivorship (JTWROS) would mean that the entire account passed to you immediately upon his death and there is no need for a probate on that account.

It may very well be that everything continues to run the same. However, an heir or a creditor could file a claim and dispute the contract and if they did it could mean you put in a lot of work and if you lost it would be for nothing. That's the reason it's better to get your lawyer and have them file for the court to give you authority to continue working under the contract.

Related Legal Questions