Q: Mom is about to be placed in a nursing home. I want to do the action to be completely out of the situation. I would like to make sure Mom gets any and all that I would be getting in the sale. My siblings need money. Everything I feel should be Mom’s as it is hers to begin with. They made sure the nursing home could not get it. I was not there when all was drawn up, the other siblings were. (Pittsburgh, PA)
A: There is too much information missing here to advise. For example, does mom have a will, a testamentary trust, a revocable trust or an irrevocable trust? Is anyone on the deed with mom? When was the deed executed? How is mom paying for nursing care? Is there a Medicaid issue? Do any of her children still live in the home as her caretaker for 2 years prior to her Medicaid application? (if there is one). I suggest that you sit down with an attorney and review all the details and the will or trust or whatever documents you have. There are ways to divest yourself of your inheritance. Your mother can execute another will and you can file a renunciation of inheritance once her will is filed, but this is tricky, and you need an attorney to advise you fully before doing so.
Q: I live in Pittsburgh and was my dad’s primary caregiver for past 2 years. My sister, who lives across the country, and I are named co-executors and equal 50/50 beneficiaries of the estate. I am anxious to get probate started, will filed and wrapped up as quickly as possible so my wife and I can move on with our life. Two years of caregiving and working full time have me and my wife exhausted. There are No debts or creditors. Cut and dry, but my sister, who has been estranged from our dad for 10 years, is preventing probate from getting started because she doesn’t like the attorney I consulted with (who was very good but did advise us if we wanted the process to go faster and cheaper, because she is out of state she could renounce executorship. Well my sister had a fit and got highly offended refusing to allow us to use that attorney. The two other attorneys I contacted suggested the same. Sister is also disagreeable to how I remove trash that she and I bagged up together from our dad’s home. And she opposed the amount flowers cost at the funeral. I am starting to resent her attitude and how controlling she is trying to be–for no reason as we are both equal heirs.
A: It is more efficient to have a local executor. Your sister doesn’t need to renounce her right to serve as Co-Executor, just because she lives out of town. The attorney may charge more if he must send her copies of everything and get her signatures by mail, but if she understands that, it should not be a problem. If she doesn’t like your attorney, you and she can pick a few local ones, then pull names from a hat. If she is totally disagreeable and continues this course of conduct, you can petition to remove her as Executor through your attorney.