If a friend recently passed away and left me as beneficiary on his bank accounts, can his son take me to probate court?

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If a friend recently passed away and left me as beneficiary on his bank accounts, can his son take me to probate court?

He did not have an official Will. His son stated that the only thing he found was a piece of paper that stated I was to be in charge of his estate; it was not signed. His son told me only he had seen this piece of paper so he was going to take over everything. My friend did not own a home and still owed money on his car. No bills that I am aware of other than cremation cost; the VA covered hospital bill. He was not close to his son and the son did not want me to have or do anything with the estate until he found out I was on the bank accounts ($3,400).

Asked on May 30, 2012 under Estate Planning, Texas

Answers:

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

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your loss.  I am assuming that you are the POD beneficiary, correct?  Unless his son can prove that you unduly influenced the Father in som eway as to "cheat" him out of his inheritance you should be fine.  Can his son take you to court?  He could try.  It is his right as a beneficiary.  But it would probably cost him more in legal fees that what is in the account.  If you are a joint account holder it is better.  Good luck.


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