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my sister died owning me some money and she had no will and she was not
married and she said she putting everything in her boy friend name who she
lived with for 20 years and she has 2 kids and me and my mom and my other
sister are the only proof i have but i know her estate is worth about 100.000 so i
was wondering if i could get my money back and do you charge by the hour or
the case my sister been gone 5 months

Asked on February 24, 2017 under Estate Planning, Michigan

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Based on what you write, it may be impossible to get your money:
1) In theory you could sue her "estate," which is a legal entity created by law to pay a deceased's final expenses, clear up her debts, and then distribute the remainder, but if she put her assets in her boyfriends name prior to her death, you will not get them: he has no obligation to pay her debts, and she had  the right to transfer, gift, etc. her assets while she was still alive.
2) Under Section 566.132 of your state's statutes, an agreement which  will not be performed for more than one year MUST be in writing to be enforceable. If when you loaned her the money, she did not have to repay until sometime more than a year had passed, her agreement to repay had to have been in writing; if it was not, it may not be enforceable in your state.
3) Even if the loan agreement were enforceable, with nothing in writing, proving it in court (which you'd have to do, were you to sue the estate) may be very difficult.


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