How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Irwin Law Your Own Question
Irwin Law
Irwin Law, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 7415
Experience:  Lawyer & Real Estate Broker, 30+ years, foreclosure, land contracts, inheritance, probate.
Type Your Legal Question Here...
Irwin Law is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I need a probate attorney to answer a question. Right. i am

This answer was rated:

i need a probate attorney to answer a question.
JA: What state are you in? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: right. i am aware. maine
JA: Has anything been filed or reported?
Customer: yes. I filed a petition for formal probate - petition to remove PR - application to appoint myself pr - respondents filed objections. I want to strike.
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: they are attorneys. I am pro per. I want to avoid being abused procedurally, and move for a directed verdict.
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
I am specifically looking for:
1. grounds to strike the answer to the petition, to eliminate the opportunity for them to preserve the objections.
2. if i need a memorandum of law to support the motion to strike
3. what motion can i file for an immediate judgement after my interrogatory is returned? Directed verdict?
4. I want to file two ex parte attachments - one for real property, and one for $....should I file an attachment or lien?
5. I am pro per, I filed a petition after being unable to find an attorney that would verse another attorney.
*also noteworthy, they know I seek standing because I am going to sue the firm once I get it, so they are going to try to trick me any way possible.
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
I am also wondering if I should transfer my case to Superior Court as there is concurrent jurisdiction in Maine.

You say that you want to avoid being abused procedurally, but then you ask . five subsequent questions, all of which are procedural in nature and specifically designed to avoid having the court ever hear the substance of your petition. Your petition for formal (supervised) probate, and or removal of the current PR will most likely be heard by the judge in a formal hearing. The steps that you outline in paragraphs 1 through 4 seem specifically designed to prevent your Petition from ever being heard. Probate lawyers will grind you up at $250 an hour. You need to get your evidence ready for the judge as soon as possible.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Im trying to figure out when you can talk, and if your advice will be effective. I actually changed my strategy...I do not have the opportunity to have an attorney. No one chooses this. Let me know, bc I am running low on time.
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
I am happy to talk on the phone. I waited a while for a response, so ....the sooner the better. My hearing is coming up.
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Is it the $42 for the question, plus $60 for the call? I dont really care if you are helpful...just curious.
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Something is wrong with this program. Whenever i make a purchase, it says there was a problem, and there was'nt.

Please contact customer service at; or e-mail directly to support Thanks.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Do you know it did'nt go through? Im pretty sure I paid.

Apparently it didn't go through. I believe that $42 + $60 will be the number.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
calling them now. again. :(

Keep on truckin'. I'm not going anywhere. :-)

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
I guess it's not an option bc it triggered a security issue on my I'm screwed.

Sorry about that. If you go ahead now and rate my Answer 5 Star thus far, and it goes through, I'll do my best to answer your separate questions on this thread.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
I changed my strategy. So my questions have changed.

Well, that's good to hear, because you were going nowhere with your old one. :-) But, I've got to close this unless I'm sure that I can get a rating.

Irwin Law and 2 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
you're all starred up.
Customer: replied 2 months ago. can we continue?

Great! Thanks! Please tell me in a very succinct fashion exactly what is going on in the probate proceeding and why you are so upset about it. I presume that you are an heir, and that the estate is monetarily substantial.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
it was set up from the beginning. They saw the assets when my parents divorced, and they colluded to steal assets and real property. so...essentially, this woman became friends with my dad, he had a girlfriend it wasnt serious, and she convinced him o have surgery,and he suffered a massive stroke. she took over everything once he was nonverbal etc. power of attorney was triggered. He had estate plan in place, drafted in 2002. This was 12/03. So my sister was power of attorney. He had a will, irrevocable trust, advanced health care sister and i only heirs, split evenly, trust for our boys. The woman, we will call her caretaker, was a client of the attorneys involved. The attorney sent my sister a letter, two months post stroke saying my father asked him to revoke power of attorney and give it to the caretaker. She objected, but he said "get a lawyer and fight it" They immediately started transferring real property to caretaker, she alienated everyone, sued anyone she could o.b.o. my dad, forged deeds, documents, etc...snuck him off to another surgery, medicated him to all hell...and liquidated the estate. she tried/failed to kill him a bunch, but he lasted 10 years. That said, she had no income or assets or land the entire time. 2014, he passes, and the two attorneys that represent the caretaker produce this fraudulent will, making caretaker beneficiary of property that was in trust and a $30k lien for taxes. (she was fiduciary mind you) I immediately retained counsel to remove her. She was essentially giving all personal property away to get rid of it, so my sister and I got nothing. My sister is in MI, I am in Maine. Long and short, she took everyhting, sold a million in personal property for 250k and kept it. Never accounted, never communicated, distributed etc. eliminated right of way to trust, etc. Yeah, I am pissed. The firm I brought on to remove her, whom I paid up front, did not take any action. I do not know why to this day. After that, i talked to over 200 attorneys, and they all said i had a valid claim, in fact it was criminal what they did, but they would'nt go against an attorney. Especially two attorneys. So I filed a petition to remove based on breach of fiduciary, undue influence, fraud, inability to administer estate, conflict of interest..etc. I asked for 3 pages of relief in line with what i read in the 200 Maine cases i am using for reference. I am the first person to file formal probate in this state. No one thinks i can do it, except me...So...I digress...I filed a formal probate petition to remove, appoint me, and get the money she owes me, and rescission on the land they transferred after death. The PR objected to my petition, just said she didnt know, and denies, and another partner from the former firm, filed an appearance for caretaker, and said he didnt know, and denies. So, the attorney who revoked POA, and executed the will is ***** *****. The attorney who was appointed PR, is Wendy Starkey, and the current attorney for caretaker is Greg Orso, an other partner at the firm they dissolved when ***** ***** was sanctioned for elder fraud in 2008. Same time he forged the will. :) So...yeah. I am afraid that Orso will procedurally abuse me, because he has in the past. He is president of the bar, and they are all well connected. I filed a scathing bar complaint against ***** *****, and they are revoking his bar license. So, there's that... I don't understand why everyone says probate is so tough. This is cut and dry. They have no defense. Its worse than it sounds. PR called police on my mom and myself, refused to protect the estate, sold a $75k boat for $20k, and gave things away as they were hers. Yeah, I am bitter.
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
To date: no appraisal, account, distribution, nothing...except the remainder of the trust, minus the right of way, and we each got $2k. Beyond that, she won't respond, or close the estate, opened in july of 2014. #2014-0550.
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
I am obviously much more clear, and less emotional in court...but I am stressed, and my son is driving me crazy, and i can't get good legal advice. I want to file an interrogatory, then file for summary judgement, which i know is bold, but i dont think they can survive it.

I understand why attorneys do not want to get involved with this situation. Actually, you have stated no facts, just accusations of wrong-doing and ad hominem attacks against the people involved. I can't tell what was done, or when it was done. It might help if you would establish some sort of time line with dates and events. That will help you organized your presentation to the court. It seems that things started happening to your father's assets in 2003. You, your mother and your sister were around at that time and could have taken action, couldn't you? You will undoubtedly be asked to explain why no action was taken while he was alive. I don't know what interrogatory you wish to submit, but typically, the actions that you are seeking from the probate court are usually discretionary with the judge, and you cannot obtain summary judgment for a discretionary act. Summary judgment is only available when there is no disputed question of fact and that the question is one of law only.

Here's what you need to keep in mind:

1)refused to protect the estate, (this is a subjective opinion, and not a statement of fact. You can't testify to that because that invades the province of the court. The judge has to make that conclusion based on the evidence.)

2) sold a $75k boat for $20k, (this is an allegation of fact, but do you have evidence prove it in court. Do you have an expert who can testify that the value of the boat was $75k on the day it was sold?

3) gave things away as they were hers. Can you introduce evidence of what was given away? That it in fact was property of the trust or the estate? The value? Given to her friends?

Suggestion: Pick the 3 or 4 most significant properties that were mishandled by the PR and concentrate on those. Also, concentrate on the failures to administer and close the estate in a reasonable time, i.e. about 12-18 months.

Suggestion: Don't get sidetracked onto side issues like, "PR called police on my mom and myself". If you do, you'll never get your main case before the judge.

The PR objected to my petition, just said she didnt know, and denies, and another partner from the former firm, filed an appearance for caretaker, and said he didnt know, and denies. What you describe here is the method and form of Answers to a complaint or Petition to a Court. This procedure is set out in the Maine Rules of Civil Procedure, which you should become familiar with before you try to take on those lawyers in the courtroom. Probate courts often have their own supplemental rules for discovery and hearings such as you will be involved in.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
I agree, and understand. I dont know (assuming you did'nt) if you looked up the case, but I stuck to the statutorily prescribed obligations under fiduciary for PR. I have photo documentation of all the personal property, as well as experts to testify to all my claims which are supported by hard copies. I have over 700 hard copies. That said, i agree with you on choosing the salient issues. I already filed my petition, and the hearing date is set. I am well versed in MeCivPro, Probate rules, Probate Code, Etc...I would have to be, as I am David, taking on the proverbial Goliath. That said, this petition is only to remove PR, and get back what they took unlawfully. Once I have standing, I will sue the firm, and file a tort claim for intentional interference with an expected inheritance. I appreciate your subsequent response, and I am confident in my case, and my ability to find law to support my actions. I keep trying to get help from attorneys, but I am prepared, and confident. I have much law behind me, and will do due diligence to work through the procedural aspects. Thank you.

Sounds like you're headed in the right direction. Best of luck. I have to close out this question now.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Thanks for your help. Look for the precedent. Cheers.