What Property Rights Do I Have in My Deceased Parent’s Estate?

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I was wondering if a parent had four children ,and signs over the property (deed) to three of them, can the three children use money from the estate to take care of the property after the parent is deceased? I was also wondering what the remaining child can do to protect his interest in the assets of said estate? Thanks!

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If you transfer property during your lifetime, it is not a part of your estate. If you are asking whether funds from the parent’s estate should be used to take care of property that belongs to a child, the answer is generally no — but, of course, if the child is essentially getting an advanced distribution of their share of the estate, the child can use that for any purpose, including upkeep of the child’s property.

And what about the fourth child, who not only didn’t get a share of the house but now worries that his share of what’s left will be spent on the house he doesn’t own? Well, this is exactly the sort of reason that we have probate courts.

If there is a probate opened in this matter, I would suggest that the fourth child keep a close watch on it, and be prepared to object if anything improper is going on. And if there is no probate? He might do well to open one, or at least use the possibility of opening one as a way to negotiate with his siblings.

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Author: House Attorney