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N Cal Atty
N Cal Atty, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 9409
Experience:  attorney at self
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My husband passed away on July 1st, 2015. I legally obtained

Customer Question

my husband passed away on July 1st, 2015. I legally obtained access to his storage after August 8, 2012. I was paying the bill before he passed away and have paid it since.
I just received a letter from my husbands brother... demanding items out of the storage which he claims belong to him. The letter was mailed 10-28-15, and I received it today 10-31-15. In the letter he is giving me 48 hours to comply to his demands or he is going to sue me for possession of stolen property.
One of the items he has listed as belonging to him is actually a gift my husband received for his 50th birthday. He's also claiming that I've been holding his items since July 1st... but I didn't get access to the storage until after August 8, 2015.
My questions are:
1. Is this legal?
2. If so, what recourse do I have as it has already passed his 48 hour limit?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  N Cal Atty replied 1 year ago.

I am sorry to hear this.

Did your husband leave a Will?

Has a probate case been filed yet?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No, He didn't have a will and there's been no probate case filed. My husband had very little and what he had was at his sister's house or in storage. His brother took everything that was at his sister's house. He also took everything that belonged to my husband out of my car because he had the car and the keys in his possession after my husband passed.I went through the legal process to obtain access to the storage in order to keep my husbands brother from taking everything away from my husbands children. I'm not even sure if the items he's claiming are his really belong to him... as I stated previously... one of the items he's trying to claim I know for a fact does not belong to him and he even states in his demand letter that the picture in question was given to my husband as a present on his 50th birthday.The person I'm dealing with is a bully and believes he has rights to everything that belonged to his brother. I'm fearful to even be around him without someone with me.
Expert:  N Cal Atty replied 1 year ago.

The brother is not acting legally.

You are the closest surviving relative, not the brother, and you can file a probate petition asking the Court to appoint you as Administrator of the Estate. Once that is done, you will be the only person who can legally gain access to the storage unit, and you can sue the brother to recover any items he wrongfully stole.

You can ignore the brother's demands. Once an Administrator is appointed, you can tell the brother to file a claim against the Estate,

You can get a free consultation from some of the California probate attorneys listed by location here.

Please follow up on this with a local attorney.

I hope this information is helpful.