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Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 102142
Experience:  Fully licensed attorney in Texas in private practice.
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My Dad died 12/8/13. I was cut off almost immediately. My stepmother

Customer Question

My Dad died 12/8/13. I was cut off almost immediately. My stepmother and brother transferred and sold, gave away Dad's belongings. With a lawyers help I had her produce a will, which was just registered in Feb of 2015!! It named myself and brother as executor of my fathers estate and personal belongings. Share and share alike. I hired a new lawyer in Jan. of 2015, 1500.00 retainer, he has done absolutely nothing. I mean nothing. He don't even return my calls!! I need help!! I need an estate lawyer with criminal experience at this point, I believe. My father also has an asbestos lawsuit against Bethlehem Steel corp that is still going and stepmother wanted me to sign off my rights to it!! I really need a good, informed, lawyer. HELP!!!
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Estate Law
Expert:  Ely replied 2 years ago.
Hello and welcome to JustAnswer. Please note:
(A) This is general information and is not legal advice. No specific course of action is proposed herein. No attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an expert on this site. This is repeated in numerous disclaimers throughout the site. By continuing, you confirm that you understand and agree to these terms; and (B) there may be a slight delay between your follow ups and my reply while I am typing out my answer.
I am very sorry to hear about your loss, and, this situation.
What exactly are you asking here? For example:
-How do I find a good attorney?
-Once I have counsel, what steps would I need to take to stop her from wasting the estate and reverse the actions she's done?
This is not an answer, but an Information Request. I need this information to answer your question. Please reply, so I can answer your question. Thank you in advance.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Both actually. I need a good, reliable lawyer and I need to know the steps to take, so I am better informed of what to do. Also is this now criminal? They sold a large amount of cars and property.
Expert:  Ely replied 2 years ago.
Thank you.
1) May I recommend the PA Bar referral program - here. The attorneys are vetted and qualified. You should be able to find an attorney you are confident with and whom you can trust, and who is available ASAP.
2) What that attorney would want to do is to file pleadings in court to (a) enjoin her from acting to waste the estate, and (b) perhaps a motion to have her removed as an Executor.
3) A PA executor has duties to the estate, which are outlined here. If she breaches any of these duties, this may be enough to have her sanctioned, and/or removed. It may also be enough to formally sue her for negligence and other related actions if her waste to the estate would be found irreversible.
4) It would only be criminal if the authorities believe that she actionable stole property or embezzled funds. Most jurisdictions prefer to let the civil courts handle such matters, but if her actions went beyond negligence and into theft, then the prosecutor may become interested.
I hope this helps and clarifies. Gentle Reminder: Use the SEND or REPLY button to keep chatting, or please rate when finished. You may always ask follow ups at no charge after rating. Kindly rate my answer as one of the top three faces/stars and then SUBMIT, as this is how I get credit for my time with you. Rating my answer the bottom two faces/stars or failing to submit the rating does not give me credit and reflects poorly on me, even if my answer is correct. I work very hard to formulate an informative and honest answer for you; please reciprocate my good faith.