How can I stop my brothers from coming in the house my mother left me

My mother pasted away last Wednesday in her trust she left me her home. My
brothers are not happy about this, they both came over today , ganging up on me
and started going thew her personal files and told me they could come in anytime
and do what they wanted. One went so far as threatening me that he would hit me
so hard that it would kill me. If that wasn’t bad enough their both now calling
me a lair and a thief,saying if I didn’t have ny thing to hid that there
shouldn’t be any problem with letting them go threw her records. Is this so and
what are my rights?

Asked on June 17, 2017 under Estate Planning, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

If the house was properly left to you alone, it is your house (or it is the trust's house, but under the terms of the trust, the home is for your benefit--it is not 100% clear from your question what the precise situation is). If they try to come into your home (or a home that you have sole use and possession of--e.g. if it's a trust that technically owns it) against your will, they are trespassing: call the police. You can press charges against them for trespassing; for theft if they take anything; for terroristic threats (for threatening to hit you so hard it would kill you); etc. They have no right to enter your home, go through any belongings there, or threaten you.
If they sincerely believe that there is something improper going one--maybe that a will or trust was forged, or obtained by fraud or deceit, or that you are lying about the terms of a will or trust, etc.--there are legal remedies for them: they can bring a lawsuit against you, the trust, and/or your mother's estate to challenge the distribution of property (e.g. the home) on grounds that the will or trust is not valid. In the lawsuit, IF they could convince a court of that (and you'd have your chance to present evidence and documentation supporting your position), they can get the distribution changed...but that (a  lawsuit) is the only legal or proper way they have of challenging entry. Trespassing, threates, etc.--those are criminal acts, and you could contact the police.


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