What to do if my friend died without a Will and left a minor child?.

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What to do if my friend died without a Will and left a minor child?.

He owned his own home outright. He has 1 minor child who resides with its mother. The mother and my friend were never married. If the minor child’s mother is appointed guardian/conservator of the minor child, will she be able to sell my friends home and keep the money for herself? I am concerned she will blow the minor child’s inheritance.

Asked on November 24, 2013 under Estate Planning, New Jersey

Answers:

Anne Brady / Law Office of Anne Brady

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

This sort of situation/problem is the reason people, especially people with children, should have a will.  If your friend had had a will he could have provided that the money go into trust for the child with someone other than the mother as the trustee.  Unfortunately, the most likely scenario here is that the mother will be put in charge of managing the child's inheritance.  If there is some other relative of the child on the father's side who wants to step in and hire a lawyer for the child to move the court for someone else to be put in charge, that is an option that may be pursued.


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