If my boyfriend of 4 yearswas in an auto accident that left him with serious brain damage, who determines what happens to his money?

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If my boyfriend of 4 yearswas in an auto accident that left him with serious brain damage, who determines what happens to his money?

My boyfriend and I have been together 4 years and had lived together in our own apartment for over 2 years. We had saved up $4,000 and kept it in a safe in the basement at his sister and brother in-law’s house( which was right down the road from where we lived). His sister recently found out the money was in their basement, and its been 6 months since John’s accident. I am to the point where I want the money deposited into my boyfriend’s bank account so that nothing will happen to it but his sister will not comply with this idea. Do I have any say in what happens to this money?

Asked on October 14, 2010 under Personal Injury, Michigan

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Sorry to hear about John's terrible accident.

Since both you and he had saved the $4,000, you would have standing to assert a claim for the funds against John's sister.  Standing means you would have an interest in the funds which would allow you to file a lawsuit.  You could file a lawsuit against John' s sister to establish a constructive trust.  A constructive trust means that the sister is wrongly holding the funds and would be required to convey the funds to you.

In the future, it would be advisable to petition the court to establish a conservatorship to manage John's financial affairs.  If you want to manage his financial affairs, you could be appointed the conservator.  Establishing a conservatorship can be a lengthy and expensive procedure, but it may be something to consider presuming that there is a substantial recovery of monetary damages from the auto accident.

 


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