What to do if my mom passed away recently at he age of 46 and had no Will?

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What to do if my mom passed away recently at he age of 46 and had no Will?

The day after she died my uncle and aunt drove up to her old house (30 miles away) and stole her wallet with $2000 in it, her car, her phone and they keys to her house. Her wallet has my birth certicate and social securiy number in there. He said over the phone to my guardian I am with now that he is going to junk the car for $400. My guardian who had known my mom for four years knows deep down in his heart that my mom would have wanted nothing else then that car going to me. Whats gonig to happen and what should I do?

Asked on December 12, 2012 under Estate Planning, Massachusetts

Answers:

Catherine Blackburn / Blackburn Law Firm

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Because your Mom died without a will, her assets will go to the people listed in the Massachusetts statutes.  Since she had at least one child, her brother and sister are not entitled to anything.  Therefore, your uncle and aunt are stealing from your Mom's estate.

You said that you have a guardian.  Does this mean you are under age 18?  If so, your guardian will have to act for you.  You and your guardian can take a couple paths - the first is to consult a probate lawyer immediately.  If you do this, the lawyer may be able to convince your uncle and aunt to stop what they are doing and return the items.

The other path is to call the police.  This will, no doubt, upset your uncle and aunt but their actions are theft.  They are not entitled to these items and need to stop what they are doing.

Some kind of estate or probate action will be needed to pass your mother's assets to you.  The cash should come to you without probate action.  The car title will have to be changed to you or, if you are under age 18, your guardian for you.  Her bank accounts will have to be distributed to you.  Any insurance proceeds should be paid directly to you.  Unless your mother had many other assets, there should be some kind of process to do this without great cost or difficulty.

I am sorry for your loss and hope this helps.


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