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RobertJDFL, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 13652
Experience:  Experienced in multiple areas of the law.
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I am about to get married, but my wife-to-be has a problem -

Customer Question

I am about to get married, but my wife-to-be has a problem - her father has taken all her money (over $200,000) because he doesn't want her to marry me. After we get married, am I able to sue her father for her money? She is afraid to try to get it back because she doesn't want to be disinherited (he is 80 and has an estate easily in excess of a million), and I doubt she would ever sue him herself, so I am considering whether to sue for her. I make plenty of money and she doesn't need the inheritance, and I am sick of this old asshole and his petty threats to her. You don't need to tell me that suing him may cause severe stress in our marriage and that I shouldn't; I may not - but I'd like to know if I have any right to sue him without her written consent or permission.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  RobertJDFL replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for using Just Answer. I look forward to assisting you.

I do need to ask for a little more information though to make sure I am understanding correctly. When you say that her father took your fiance's money, are you speaking about her future inheritance that she is supposed to receive? He's changing his will, in other words?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No, this was her own money that she earned on her own in her own bank account. When he found out she was seeing me, he bullied her into taking HER money out of her bank account and giving it to him. This is not her inheritance money.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
It is sad she is so afraid of him, but that's the way it is, he doesn't approve of her, he's half-senile, but somehow he still has an emotional hold on her and is able to bully her into doing things his way.
Expert:  RobertJDFL replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your reply.

Unfortunately, you cannot sue your future father-in-law for her, because you lack what in law is known as standing. Standing, or locus standi, is capacity of a party to bring suit in court. State laws define standing. At the heart of these statutes is the requirement that plaintiffs have sustained or will sustain direct injury or harm and that this harm is redressable. The direct harm or injury was against your fiance, not you, so there is no way for the court to compensate you for an injury or damages that you did not directly sustain. If you tried to sue, the case would be dismissed on these grounds.

Now, your wife could file a suit pro-se (on her own, without legal counsel) and execute a limited power of attorney to have you speak for her. A power of attorney, despite its name, has nothing to do with the practice of law; it means that you would act as her agent for the purposes of bringing suit. However, she would still have to be listed as the plaintiff on the suit. And ideally, if it is an option for you, you are better off hiring private counsel to bring an action and represent her in court versus trying to go it alone.

Please let me know if you need clarification or additional information, and I'll be happy to assist you. Thank you.