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My mom is 90. She wrote a will years ago stating that after…

My mom is 90...

My mom is 90. She wrote a will years ago stating that after her death I could love in her house as long as I pay the mortgage and bills. Now she and my brother have put the house in his name, are thinking of selling it, and won't talk to me about it. I've stayed living near her to care for her and because I knew I would eventually move into her house. I've spent a lot of money to repair and beautify the house. My husband and I have cared for her full time for four years at great expense. Don't I have a right to be part of these discussions since I planned my life around what she promised on her will?

Lawyer's Assistant: What state is this in? It matters because laws vary by location.

Illinois

Lawyer's Assistant: What steps have been taken so far?

I did a title search and found that my mom took multiple loans to bail out my brother going back 20 years. She now owes 200k on the house and I can't even afford the mortgage anymore when she passed. My brother also t's her to remove me as a trustee. I'm afraid he's going to have her removee as a beneficiary next.

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Answered in 14 minutes by:
4/16/2018
Jessica B
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 1,842
Experience: Attorney at Donald B. Linsky & Associates, PA
Verified

Hello. My name is ***** ***** I am a licensed estate planning attorney. I hope I may be of assistance with your question. Please remember to rate my service at the end of this session. Thank you!

I am so sorry to hear you are going through this. I deal with this all the time in my practice. Unfortunately you have limited choices. The first option, is your mother needs to execute a Power of Attorney, definitely not your brother, to make financial decisions on her behalf. This may be difficult since your brother seems to be controlling her. The next option is to have her declared incompetent and a guardian appointed to make decisions on her behalf. There are two problems with this choice. Problem number one is your mother may be very competent and therefore the courts will not declare incompetent. Problem number two is this option can be very expensive. I've seen guardianships cost anywhere from $15,000 to $20,000.

Another option is if you feel your brother is taking financial advantage of your mother, you could have a restraining order filed against him The downside to this option is obviously the destruction of any family relationship that may be present.

These are the steps you may take while she is alive. Next I will move on to what you can do after her passing. Before I do that I want to make sure you do not have any questions or need clarification of the information provided, so far.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Thank you. My brother is already sole financial and medical power of attorney. He is also now sole trustee as he persuaded my mom to remove me as a trustee. There are many things he has done, such as moving out of the country for three years and ign0ring my pleas to him for help when my mom was going blind and beginning to fall frequently. Ignoring my requests for money from the estate when my business needed help, though he took many distributions from my mom's estate over the years. Refusing to speak to me, though I am a beneficiary. Lying to my mom about my fitness to serve as a trustee. She is utterly controlled by him but perfectly competent.

Ok then your best option may be to report him for financial elder abuse and exploitation. Just because she is competent does not mean she fully understands what she is doing. I caution all my clients with this option because the fall out is usually broken relationships. If you are prepared for that then this might be your only option.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Our family is already done. I never thought this would happen to us. I am tempted to just walk away but I have spent so much time, energy and money taking care of my mom and her house to the detriment of my daughter's and my own life. . So now to walk away from my inheritance which is something like half a million dollars when I have no savings or retirement fund .... not sure I should do that.

After she passes you may challenge the Will and Trust and have the documents invalidated, which would make you a 50% heir.

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I have not heard back from you and I wanted to make sure I answered all of your questions. Please remember to rate my service. Thank you!

Jessica B
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 1,842
Experience: Attorney at Donald B. Linsky & Associates, PA
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