How do I know my stepfather is maintaining my home?

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How do I know my stepfather is maintaining my home?

I have 50% ownership in a home left to me in my mother’s estate Trust. He is able to live in it as long as he maintains it. How do I know? We do not speak.

Asked on August 10, 2018 under Estate Planning, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

There is no way to know but to inspect the property: there is no agency, etc. which will do this for you. If you believe that your stepfather is not maintaining it and so violating his obligations, you can bring a lawsuit against him to force him to both allow you to inspect the property and to keep it up. This type of lawsuit, which would be filed "chancery" court (a part or division of country court which handles cases involving things other than straightforward lawsuits for monetary compensation), is considerably more complicated than filing, say, a small claims case; you are advised to retain an attorney to help you.


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