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Amber E.
Amber E., Attorney
Category: Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 1482
Experience:  Experienced practitioner in probate and succession law.
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My son died last year in Nov at the age of 53. He was adopted

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My son died last year in Nov at the age of 53. He was adopted by my aunt when he was 11 yrs of age. He was paralyzed from the neck down playing football @ the age of 17 and required constant care Daily. When my aunt & uncle died they left the house to him. He had a live in girl friend who was his care taker but she was paid by the state. Suppossedly there is a notorized paper giving her the house. About 5 or 6 yrs ago his taxes were delinquent and I paid the taxes so that he would not lose the house and since that time I have being paid his taxes. What legal rights do I have to this property verses his care taker. The property is listed in his name only and the caretaker has not been able to produce the notorized paper
Upon death, title to the decedent’s property passes immediately to the beneficiaries under the decedent’s will or to the heirs-at-law if the decedent died without a will. Based on the information you have provided, no will (or a notarized paper) has been produced.

Accordingly, the former caretaker/girlfriend is entitled to nothing, because she is of no relation and has produced no will giving anything to her. You are a relation, by virtue of your aunt being his mother (by adoption), so your claim is greater than the caretaker, assuming there is no other relatives closer in relation to him than you (such as children, grandparents or siblings). I have provided a web address below to the Texas laws governing heirship.

Nevertheless, there must be an actual transfer of ownership of the property by proving the will in court or, if there is no will, by having a court determine who are the decedent’s heirs and what is the property to be distributed. Until then, no one has a claim that is likely to be recognized by a third party.

Therefore, to protect your rights and receive whatever interest in the property you are entitled to receive, you would need to initiate a succession or probate of the deceased's estate. You can contact a local probate attorney for assistance, or the legal aid office serving your community.
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