Moms Boyfriend

Hi, my mom passed away 8/7/16 at the time of
her passing away her boyfriend of now what
has been 4 years asked me to give him 30
days to grieve without taking her belongings i
agreed. 40 days has now passed my dad and i
went over to her to get some of the belongings
and he wouldn’t let me in the house. he has
only been on the lease since 9/7/16 and i have
receipts of proof of purchase of things she
purchased without his name on it that he
wouldn’t give us. how do i go about getting
these things?

Asked on September 20, 2016 under Estate Planning, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

You have to open probate, get appointed (or have your dad be appointed) her estate's personal representative, and then, as the personal representative, sue him for the value of the belongings and/or for their return. The problem is, the only legal way to get access to belongings which you have a right to but which another person is withholding from you is to sue; but you and your father have no current right to your mother's belongings, until they are distributed to you after probate. However, the personal representative can bring a legal action before probate is over, on behalf of the estate. You can get information about opening probate and applying for and being appointed personal representative from the probate court; once one of you is appointed, he files a lawsuit in the name of the estate, brought in his capacity as personal representative.

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