How to Retrieve Personal Items of Deceased Son

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How to Retrieve Personal Items of Deceased Son

Son passed away at 26. Went to the police department today on orders from the
detective working the case who claimed we would be able to obtain a copy of
the police report and a release for his vehicle that they had put in storage as it
had some personal items in it. Upon arrival we were informed we needed power
of attorney in order to do that. As we can not get power of attorney from
someone who has passed away, how do we proceed to get the equivalent of
that and get the car and report released to us? We will be getting a death
certificate this week.

Asked on January 8, 2019 under Estate Planning, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

You need authority from the probate court over your son's estate, commonly called "letters testamentary," though your state may have a different name for this. One of you needs to be named by the court as personal representative or administrator (either term may be used) for the estate; that person will then be able to retrieve his belongings.


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