Who has the right to own the estate.

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Who has the right to own the estate.

My mother died in December in maine. The house that she died in is paid off and was given to her by her father, my grandfather. and we grew up in the home. My mother got married 10 years ago to a man when I was 18. He moved into the house but never worked or put any money into the house and the house was never put into his name. My mother and her husband separated a year and a half to 2 years ago but never divorced and she died a few months ago. Now he wants the house that was given to us by my grandfather and my child hood home. Who would win in this type of situation.

Asked on May 8, 2018 under Estate Planning, Maine

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

If there was no will (you do not mention a will), then when your mother died, her home passed by "intestate succession," or the rules for who gets what when there is no will. In that case, since she was married (separated is irrelevant; they never divorced, so they were still married) but you are not the child of her husband, then in your state, he inherits a 1/2 interest in her house (and in anything else she owned) and you (and any siblings of yours) inherit the other 1/2 interest in her house (and anything else): that is, you and her husband will become joint or co-owners of the home. Speak to a probate law attorney about handling her estate and making sure everyone gets what they are entitled to.
 


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