Do I have to give money from the estate away? - Estate Planning Law Questions and Answers-

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Do I have to give money from the estate away?

My mother passed away 3 years ago. Her boyfriend of 24 years just passed away and through POD left everything to me. There is no will. Now his sister insists I give money to his nephews. Can she do anything legally? And if I wanted to give something to them am I opening a door to trouble?

North Sound Law, PS
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If the money was left to you via a POD account, you are under no obligation to give any of that money to anyone else. The funds were left to you. If your mother's boyfriend had other assets in his estate - e.g., furniture, investment accounts, a vehicle, a house, etc. - that were not disposed of using a POD designation, then those assets are subject to probate. Since he died intestate (i.e., without a Will), his estate will pass to his next of kin via the line of descent- which is set forth in the probate statutes.

Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 9/26/2011

Ashman Law Office
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Without seeing the paperwork no one can advise you.

Answer Applies to: Georgia
Replied: 9/23/2011

Answer By Dean D. Stein
Harville-Stein Law Offices, LLC
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P.O.D. or"Payable on Death" is a strong beneficiary designation, that generally could only be overcome by showing fraud or undue influence or similar. You do not have to give that money to anyone, it is yours at his death. Ifyou choose to give itto someone, that is different.

Answer Applies to: Alabama
Replied: 9/23/2011

Answer By Dara Goldsmith
Goldsmith & Guymon
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There is no concrete answer to this question. To adequately address your options you should speak with an attorney and address the timing of the POD account addition, the medical condition of the decedent and your options. We charge $100 for a one hour consultation with an attorney who will provide you with important information regarding your specific case and will able to advise you on the options that you should consider in determining your next steps, or if it involves reviewing documents and preparation in advance of the meeting, we charge $300 for the consultation, because there is over one hour of review and preparation for the meeting and one hour for the meeting.

Answer Applies to: Nevada
Replied: 9/23/2011

Asset Protection and Elder Law Center
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You do not have to give anything to anyone. I suggest you consult an attorney if you plan on giving anything or doing anything. You should know what your rights are and based on the information you provided it doesn't appear you are obligated to give money to them. POD doesn't allow her to have any rights legally but again seeking a legal consultation is a smart thing to do.

Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 9/23/2011

Answer By Brian Haggerty
Minor, Bandonis and Haggerty, P.C.
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Legally, if he put you as "payable on death" beneficiary then the money is yours. If you give the nephews anything, it will be gifts subject to the usual rules on gifts.

Answer Applies to: Oregon
Replied: 9/23/2011

Law Office of Stephen P. Dempsey
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She really has no right to pursue you but it often avoids the possiblity of a lawsuit by offering them something and having them sign a waiver.

Answer Applies to: New Jersey
Replied: 9/23/2011

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