What can I do about my stepfather taking property from my mother’s estate for which he has expressed that he does not have an interest in?

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What can I do about my stepfather taking property from my mother’s estate for which he has expressed that he does not have an interest in?

He has signed independent administration over to me, and heirship yet he is loading up everything she owned before I can settle her debts. According to the police, there is nothing I can do.

Asked on March 15, 2015 under Estate Planning, Texas

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your loss.  If you are the fiduciary of your Mother's estate then you can absolutely do something.  You have the obligation to marshall (gather) all the assets that are part of her estate and value them, pay off debt and then distribute.  Remeber that you can only marshal the assets that are not jointly owned with her husband.  If he is taking or disipating assets you can have him stopped.  Go to the Probate Court, make sure that you are properly appointed and then with your appointment start an action to reclaim the assets.  You will need legal help.  Good luck.


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