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Christopher B, Esq
Christopher B, Esq, Attorney
Category: Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 2982
Experience:  Litigation Attorney with education focus on estate planning and tax
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I need to find out where my mother who passed away a few years

Customer Question

I need to find out where my mother who passed away a few years ago put her will and testament I'm in another state and I know my mother had plots and a home and a car and a will and safety deposit boxes but I was not told where any of her money or savings or deeds or wills were located and my mother told me she wanted everything split equally 2 ways to her only living children.She had a restaurant full of everything and I have never even got a penny and I'm sure she wanted me to have half and my sister has put a hunting retreat and are using my moms home for a profit I have never even seen one mickle and my mom knew how she was I have the rite to see my mothers last will and testament and her wishes . I know she had a restaurant that was fully equipped. Never got a dime . I know my mother had assets and it's so hard to think my sister would do that to me..My mother said she was going to try to get every penny and do nothing to keep me from anything and I need to know why I got NOTHING
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Estate Law
Expert:  Christopher B, Esq replied 2 years ago.
My name is***** and I will be answering your question today.
You need to search for the record for any probate in the state in which your mother died under your mother's name. You might also ask other friends or relatives if they have any information about the will or any law firm that would have executed the will of your mother.
It doesn't matter what your mother's wishes were, only what she included in her will. You might also find that there was no will and in that case the proceeds of your mother's estate will pass under the laws of intestate succession in the state that she died. Under the laws in most jurisdiction and if there is no spouse involved, intestate succession would likely give you 50% of these proceeds.
If you do find that your sister fraudulently disbursed the funds of your mother's estate then you would have a cause of action against her and should file a civil suit against her.
Please let me know if I have answered your question and if so, positively rate my answer.
Expert:  Christopher B, Esq replied 2 years ago.
I see that you have viewed my answer. If you do not have any further questions and you feel that I have fully answered your question, please positively rate my answer.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I knew that already
Expert:  Christopher B, Esq replied 2 years ago.
What exactly are you asking then?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I need to know how I can view a will while I'm in Alabama if I was there I would have already done that I don't know if she had money in different banks different property and safety deposit boxes
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
My mom could have had different accounts she lived in Aline and I got nothing because I can't work due to health issues and filing for my SSI I COULD NOT HELP WITB THE FUNERAL so I thought I had to let her have everything she had a home a restaurant ready to open fully equipped and I never signed anything and I want to o ow if my mom bought plots she would have a will
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I can't ask my sister or she will get everything forever and my mother said she wanted us to split everything
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I'm in Alabama nobody is going to tell me anything I need someone help me find all her assets and property and a will if she had one and my sister Is not going to tell me I can't drive 750 miles to look for something when I don't know where to look
Expert:  Christopher B, Esq replied 2 years ago.
You can have a will sent to you if you are a beneficiary by the executor of the will, you could also petition the court if you feel like the will has been ignored or the executor has improperly distributed the proceeds of the will. You will need to do some leg work to know who to ask and what state to petition.
If you ask your sister it does not simply mean that she gets everything. Just because you did not help with the funeral does not give her a right to a thing in the will. If you ask her and she lies to you and fraudulently conceals a will that you are a beneficiary of then you will have standing to file suit against your sister. I would recommend sending a letter to her, keeping a copy for your documentation and move forward investigating if your mother in fact does have a will.
There is no simple way to simply make a will appear with no other information but there are ways to petition the court if you have standing to do so. I'm not sure there is any better way to answer your question with the lack of information.
I feel I have fully answered your question, please positively rate my answer if you are satisfied.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
My mother lived IN ALINE OKLAHOMA IM IN ALABAMA ITS BEEN YHAT WAY FOR 14 years she never lived in another state I do and my sister lives in Oklahoma and always has
Expert:  Christopher B, Esq replied 2 years ago.
I'm going to go above and beyond here and give you the exact information you need including phone numbers and names based on the information I have. All wills become public court records once they have been filed for probate. You will need to call, fax or send a letter to the appropriate probate court where the will has been filed will allow you to receive that court’s specific procedures for obtaining a copy of the will. The will is normally filed in the county in which the person has died. Aline, Oklahoma is located in Alfalfa county. Loren Angle is the associate Judge in the county and the phone number is(###) ###-#### You can call there and see if there has been a probate proceeding giving them your mother's name. The address is 300 S. Grand Cherokee, OK 73728 in case if you want to make requests by mail although you will have to call to see if the county accepts such requests. 58 O.S. 22 states "Any executor, devisee or legatee named in a will, or any other person interested in the estate, may at any time after the death of the testator, petition the court having jurisdiction to have the will proved, whether the same be in writing, in his possession or not, or is lost or destroyed, or beyond the jurisdiction of the state, or a nuncupative will." This gives you the right to request the will.
To search online you can also go to (this is the official court site for the state of Oklahoma). First click on the tab "legal research" then click on "search non oscn records". Then you will need to fill out the the empty blanks - start out by clicking Alfalfa county from the drop down menu and entering your mothers name in blank for name. These should be the only blank you need to fill out. Press enter after you mother's name and the site will search for for any proceedings in this county. You can do an overall search for all counties and also go to "search oscn records" on the page before to search ocis counties in the state of Oklahoma. If there was a probate involving your mother, she should pop up in the searches. These are all free of charge. There might be documents you can click on if you locate the probate to give you more information.
Once you have located the appropriate county, usually the steps involved in obtaining a copy of a will from the probate court will include the following:
(1)Appearing in person and asking for a copy of the will, or making a written request by fax or mail if applying in person isn't feasible.
(2) Paying a copying fee for the number of pages that the will contains. These fees usually range from $.50 to a few dollars per page.
(3)Providing a self-addressed, stamped envelope for mailing the will copy if the request is not made in person.
If you have determined that your mother's last will and testament has not been filed for probate, then unfortunately it is not a public court record and so who can see it is addressed by applicable state law. In Oklahoma only the named beneficiaries, personal representatives and guardians for minor children (if applicable) will be allowed to see it. So this creates a dilemma - how will you know if you are, or are not, named in a deceased person's will if the person who has possession of the will won't let you see it (I'm assuming this is your sister)? If this is the case, then you should be able to force the person in possession of the will to file it with the appropriate probate court through a legal action filed in that court. In most states it is actually a crime for a person in possession of an original will not to file it with the appropriate probate court after the person in possession of the will learns that the person who made the will has died. This is addressed by 58 O.S. 24 which states "if it be alleged in the petition that the will is in the possession of a third person and the court is satisfied that the allegation is correct, an order must be issued and served upon the person having possession of the will, requiring him to produce it in the court at the time named in the order. If he has possession of the will and neglects or refuses to produce it in obedience to the order, he may by warrant of the court be committed to the jail of the county, and kept in close confinement until he produces it." You will have to bring a petition before the appropriate court in the appropriate county.
Aside from this, although you may be named in a will as a beneficiary, the will itself may not govern the distribution of the deceased person's property at all and so the will can become a useless piece of paper even if it is filed with the appropriate probate court. How can this happen? If all of the deceased person's property consists of non-probate assets, such as joint deeds and accounts, TOD accounts and POD accounts, life insurance and retirement accounts, including IRAs and 401(k)s, then all of the deceased person's property will pass directly to the other joint owners or the named beneficiaries – in other words, the deceased person's property will pass completely outside of the terms of their will and so it will not matter what the deceased person’s will says. If this is the situation, then the only recourse potential beneficiaries of the will have is to sit down with an estate and trust litigator to determine all of their legal rights and options. You can request probate in 58 O.S. 23.
I you have any further questions please let me know. I have given you a step by step guide and included phone numbers, addresses and statutes to hep you in your search. Please give my answer a positive rating if you are satisfied.
Expert:  Christopher B, Esq replied 2 years ago.
I see that you have read my response. Do you have any further questions? If not please positively rate my answer. Thank you!
Expert:  Christopher B, Esq replied 2 years ago.
Did you have anymore questions?
Expert:  Christopher B, Esq replied 2 years ago.
Any chance for a positive rating? I put a lot of work in your answer and it would be fantastic if you could positively rate my answer.