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Barrister
Barrister, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 35339
Experience:  16 years real estate, Realtor. Landlord 26 years
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My father died and didnt have a will....but had a written

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My father died and didn't have a will....but had a written note willing his house to myself and my brother. Will this be legal to transfer deed?
Hello and welcome! My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will try my level best to help with your situation or get you to someone who can.
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I am sorry to hear about your loss, please accept my condolences...
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Is the note written entirely in father's handwriting?
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Is it signed and dated?
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Thanks
Barrister
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


Note is written in his wife's writing and only signed by him with two witnesses and dated.

Ok, in CA, in order for a will to be considered valid, it must meet certain requirements.
It must be in writing.
It must be signed by the testator.
It must have at least 2 witnesses who witness the signing by the testator.
The testator must be over 18
And, the testator must be of sound mind.
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The last two I am kind of assuming, but if they are met, then I would opine that the document would be accepted by the Probate court as a valid will.
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Thanks
Barrister
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

In CA must we go through probate court? Can the transfer of deed be done without going through the courts?

Unfortunately, yes, the will has to be probated in order for someone to be appointed Personal Representative so that they could have a deed prepared from the estate to the named heirs. Otherwise there is no one who has the legal authority to execute a deed to transfer the property.
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Thanks
Barrister
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


One last question....His wife is not on the deed only my father was...Is it possible for her to get this property or change it into her name without our knowledge. She too is a real estate broker. (step-mother)

No, she would have to forge his signature on a backdated deed to transfer the property to her solely. Then she could be charged with a felony, lose her real estate license, and go to jail.
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So legally, no, she couldn't get it in her name.
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Thanks
Barrister
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


Thank you very much...you put my mind at ease regarding my dads last wishes, and having a wicked step mother. Have a great evening.

You are very welcome. Glad I could help.
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Thanks
Barrister
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