What can I do if my father passed away and my stepmother says that he left me nothing?

UPDATED: Dec 29, 2013

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What can I do if my father passed away and my stepmother says that he left me nothing?

I am his only child, although we had spoken only once since his marriage to a Japanese mail order bride 11 years ago. I was not informed of any illness or his death. I understand he had revokable trust.She now has posession of my grandparents ashes as well. I wrote to his estate attorney and he gave the letter to her. She wrote back saying she is keeping his ashes as well as theirs (even though she never knew them. She sent a watch/ring and a few pics and told me to cherish them.Told me he left nothing for me or my sons and did not list me in his Will. She has all family heirlooms and pics/memorabilia and was only with him 10 years, I was his only child for 50.

Asked on December 29, 2013 under Estate Planning, Washington


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If you think that she is lying--that either you were listed in and given things in the will; or that there was no will, and therefore you'd inherit via intestate succession--your only recourse is to bring a legal action (i.e. a lawsuit) and seek to determine the truth in the course of litigation, such as through the mechanisms of discovery (depositions; written interrogatories; notices to produce documents; etc.). You should speak with a trusts and estates attorney about your options.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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