I would like to know what rights I have to my father’s property.

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I would like to know what rights I have to my father’s property.

My father died over five years ago and did not have a will. My aunt claims
that she owns all of his property because she owns the building that all of his
personal belongings are in. I live in Illinois and want to know what rights my
siblings and I have to claim his property.

Thanks

Asked on December 1, 2017 under Estate Planning, Illinois

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Quite a bit of time has passed but you still should have rights (it will depend on specific state law however). Since you father died without a Will and presumably no surviving spouse (since none was mentioned), then under "intestacy" law, your father's sole heirs are you and your siblings. Your aunt has no legal right to his things. Ownership of a building does not impart ownership in the personal belongngs of another that may be inside. At this point, you should consult directly with a local probate attorney you can best advise you further.

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Quite a bit of time has passed but you still should have rights (it will depend on specific state law however). Since you father died without a Will and presumably no surviving spouse (since none was mentioned), then under "intestacy" law, your father's sole heirs are you and your siblings. Your aunt has no legal right to his things. Ownership of a building does not impart ownership in the personal belongngs of another that may be inside. At this point, you should consult directly with a local probate attorney you can best advise you further.


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