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After a 10 yr. Battle with My stepmother over my father's…

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After a long 10 yr...
After a long 10 yr. Battle with My stepmother over my father's estate (he died without a will ). She received a life estate in their house. She has not paid the taxes in three yrs. now. I do not want to lose the house to taxes. Please advise me on my options to resolve this and what type of attorney do I need.
Thanks
Denise
Submitted: 2 years ago.Category: Estate Law
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1/18/2016
Estate Lawyer: Richard, Attorney replied 2 years ago
Richard
Richard, Attorney
Category: Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 57,238
Experience: 29 years of experience practicing law, including tax and estate planning.
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Good afternoon Denise. My name is ***** ***** I look forward to helping you.

A life estate owner has a legal obligation to pay the property taxes on the property. If she fails to to this, she has breached her duties and the life estate can be terminated. So, if she refuses to voluntarily give up her life estate to you by signing a quit claim deed terminating the life estate, then, you can file a suit to quiet title to ask the court to terminate the life estate and award you damages. If it comes to filing the suit, you will want to engage a commercial trial lawyer.

Under my terms of service with JustAnswer, I'm not allowed to make a specific recommendation, but I can give you direction. You would want to either contact the Texas state bar association or your nearest law school for a referral. I prefer the latter because they take great pride in their graduates and will take a more personal interest in making sure your referral is a good one because it will be a reflection of the school. But, this iis not a complicated case so you would only need a 1-2 year lawyer rather than a more experienced lawyer with the higher billing rate that comes with that experience.

Thank you so much for allowing me to help you with your questions. I have done my best to provide information which fully addresses your question. If you have any follow up questions, please ask! If I have fully answered your question(s) to your satisfaction, I would appreciate you rating my service as OK, Good or Excellent (hopefully Good or Excellent). Otherwise, I receive no credit for assisting you today. I thank you in advance for taking the time to provide me a positive rating!

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DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

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