If my father was still legally married to my mother at the time of his death but lived with his mistress for decades, what legal grounds does my mother have to his estate?

He was married to my mother for 65 years; he lived with his mistress for 55 years. My father owned the house he lived with his girlfriend; 4 months prior to his passing he added her name to the deed on the house. Note, the house my mother lives in was also owned by my father and mother. His girlfriend has a copy if the Will but won’t give us a copy. This is in a community property state.

Asked on February 3, 2013 under Estate Planning, California


Victor Waid / Law Office of Victor Waid

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

Have your mother obtain probate litigation counsel to assist her in bringing  this matter to probate court to be sorted out and to force the livein girlfriend to produce the will into court. Your mother may have a significant inheritance right to be protected. Further, you should also join with your mother for a claim as an heir on the basis you may be a pretermitted heir and part of the estate belongs to you, regardless of the livein girlfriend.

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