Can he put the house in his name even if my mom left it for the two of us? 38 Answers as of June 27, 2013

My mother passed away and did not leave a will. My brother and I are not in speaking terms.

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Leonard A. Kaanta, P.C. | Leonard A. Kaanta
No.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 5/22/2013
The Taylor Law Office L.L.C.
The Taylor Law Office L.L.C. | Ian A. Taylor
Not likely, but the answer depends on many specifics of your particular situation. A local estates attorney can help determine whether the interest can or should be held as jointly. Real property has to be probated within the state to properly recognize the passing of the owner and transfer of property for title purposes.
Answer Applies to: South Carolina
Replied: 9/27/2012
Lisa L. Hogreve, LC | Lisa L. Hogreve
Unless your mother added your brother to the deed before she died, your brother cannot place his name on the deed after she died. Check the public records, or property appraiser's office in your county to see how the home is currently titled. Depending on what you find, you may need to seek the advise of an attorney.
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 9/26/2012
Hamblin Law Office | Sally Hamblin
If there is no husband, in order for any children to obtain possession of the home, probate court must get involved. How did the house get left to you and your brother if no will? If your names were on the deed, you then contact an attorney to draft a new one.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 9/22/2012
Law Office of Patricia A. Simmons
Law Office of Patricia A. Simmons | Patrica A Simmons
You stated your mother did not have a will. Did she have a trust? Did you mother add your brother on the deed as a joint tenant prior to her death? If your brother was added to the deed, he may be the owner, as the surviving joint tenant with right of survivorship. If your mother did not have any estate plan, the State of California has specific Intestate Succession laws. That means, the statute designates who your mother's heirs at law are. Was she married at the time of her death? If there isn't a spouse, her children are her next of kin to share in equal shares. A probate petition will need to be filed to have the property distributed to your mother's heirs at law.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 9/22/2012
    Frederick & Frederick PLC | James P Frederick
    Your brother cannot legally do this, unless there was a deed leaving the property to him, or if the property was jointly owned by your mother and brother. Otherwise, in the absence of a Will, the two of you would appear to be equal heirs and there is no way your brother could do anything to change this.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 9/22/2012
    Law Offices of Gerald A. Bagazinski
    Law Offices of Gerald A. Bagazinski | Gerald A. Bagazinski
    How was it left both of you? How is your pbrother going to put it in his name/ Contact an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 9/22/2012
    Mike Yeksavich | Mike Yeksavich
    Make an appointment to set up a probate.
    Answer Applies to: Oklahoma
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Richard E. Damon, PC | Richard E. Damon
    The executor should issue a deed with the house in both names. If brother won't do this, file a petition in the probate department of the court.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Irsfeld, Irsfeld & Younger LLP | Norman H. Green
    No. If your mother owned the house in her name alone and was not married at the time of her death, then it will go through probate, and you and your brother will get equal shares.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC | John F Brennan
    Unless it was titled jointly with him during your mothers lifetime, most probably no. See an attorney, you will have to open a probate estate.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Gates' Law, PLLC | Thomas E. Gates
    If there is no other spouse, then the children share in the estate equally. He cannot put the home in his name only, unless you are getting equal value from other parts of the estate.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Horn & Johnsen SC
    Horn & Johnsen SC | Dera L. Johnsen-Tracy
    If your mother had no valid will, then her net remaining assets that did not pass by virtue of beneficiary designations or joint ownership, after all debts and expenses of her estate have been paid, must be distributed according to the laws of intestacy in her state of residence. In Wisconsin, assuming your mother was unmarried at the time of her death, then her estate should be distributed to her children, in equal shares. Any interested party can initiate a probate proceeding in the county in which your mother resided at the time of her death. You may wish to consult with a probate attorney regarding your options.
    Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Law Offices of R. Christine Brown | R. Christine Brown
    If the residence is in your mother's name alone at the time of her death, no one other than the personal representative of her estate (Administrator) can manage, sell or transfer the property. This assumes that the residence & the other assets in her estate are worth more than $150,000. A personal representative/Administrator can only be appointed by the probate court for your mother's estate. You are entitled to notice of all probate proceedings, in fact, if you are an intestate heir (because your mother left no will, by operation of law you are an heir of her estate) you can file a Petition for Probate requesting that you be appointed as Administrator. Your brother may contest it, but filing a Petition for Probate will get the probate process started. If the house is worth less than $150,000 then you or your brother can file a "Petition to determine succession to real property" which will transfer the property into both your names, assuming that you are mother's only children and she has no surviving spouse. If the property was owned by your mother and another person (spouse, your brother or someone else), depending on how title to the property is held, the residence could belong to the surviving owner despite what your mother's wishes were.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Law Offices of Michael N. Stafford | Michael N. Stafford
    Even though your mother died without leaving a will if real property is involved your mother's estate must be probated. You should consult with an attorney to determine your rights and remedies.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Danville Law Group | Scott Jordan
    It sounds as if one of you will need to probate the house. The court will ensure the house is split evenly between the two of you.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Law Offices of Charles R. Perry
    Law Offices of Charles R. Perry | Charles R. Perry
    The answer depends on how your mother held title to the house, among other things. For instance, if the house were held in joint tenancy with your brother, then he is entitled to receive the house. If the house were held solely in your mother's name and your mother in fact did not have a will, then the house will pass pursuant to the laws of intestate succession. This law will treat you and your brother equally, and would not allow him to transfer the house into his name. You need to speak to a probate lawyer to determine how the transfer of the property should occur. Since there was no will, it is probable that a probate (or at least a simplified probate proceeding) will be necessary to make the transfer. You may also wish to consult the lawyer about becoming the administrator of your mother's estate, so that you have some control over what happens to the house.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    David T. McAndrew, Attorney at Law | David T. McAndrew
    No! Not without going through probate if your mothers name was on the deed alone at her passing.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Law Offices of Frances Headley | Frances Headley
    No, you should consult a probate attorney to review all of the facts and advise you of your rights.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Atlas and Hudon, LLP | Douglas Mackubin Thomas
    In Connecticut, if your mother died without a will and owned the house outright, the laws of intestacy will distribute your mother's estate (including the house) amongst her heirs. In such a case, your brother cannot take the house or dispose of it without your consent. If your mother owned the house as a "joint tenant with right of survivorship" with your brother, he would own the house outright when your mother died.
    Answer Applies to: Connecticut
    Replied: 6/27/2013
    Goldsmith & Guymon
    Goldsmith & Guymon | Dara Goldsmith
    It all depends upon how your mom held title at the time of her death. You should consult with an attorney who can review the deed and advise you on your rights.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Minor, Bandonis and Haggerty, P.C.
    Minor, Bandonis and Haggerty, P.C. | Brian Haggerty
    Get a lawyer and file for administration of your mother's estate. As administrator, you sell the house. You pay your Mom's taxes and debts, take a fee for serving as administrator, pay your lawyer, and split the rest 50/50. Easy.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    The Law Office of Eric J Smith
    The Law Office of Eric J Smith | Eric Smith
    The law of intestate succession in Texas would have all of your mother's children receiving equally, so your brother could not exclude you without committing fraud, if you are right there was no will.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 6/27/2013
    Skillern Law Firm
    Skillern Law Firm | Penni Skillern
    Unless your mother created a trust, and left your brother as her trustee, he cannot sign a deed that would give her house to him. If she left with no documents in place, a proceeding in the probate court in the county where she lived would need to be started, and the court then would follow the intestacy laws of the state where she lived. An executor would be appointed by the court, and her assets would be divided to her heirs at law, which in most states is the spouse or children of the deceased.You would need to go to the probate court and fight for your heir rights.
    Answer Applies to: Oklahoma
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Law Office Of Victor Waid
    Law Office Of Victor Waid | Victor Waid
    You will need to file a petition in probate court and obtain an order to have the property to be transferred from the name of your deceased mother to you and your brother. You may want to determine the value of the property and commence a buy out of your brother one half or a sellout of your one half to him. If he is living in the house during the interim period, you are entitled to one half the fair monthly rental value from him; so don't forget to figure that item into any calculations or negotiations with him. No he cannot put the title in his name alone.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Law Office of Russell M. Blood, P.C. | Russell M. Blood
    It depends on how the house was titled when your mother died. If it was titled jointly between your mother and your brother, then he became the owner upon her death. If it was titled solely in her name at her death, then the answer is no. In that case, you would each be entitled to half. To find out how it was titled, you would need to obtain a copy of the last recorded deed from the county recorder's office. Since your mother didn't leave a will, one of you will need to be appointed as administrator of the estate by the probate court to have the legal authority to transfer title to the house. The house may only be transferred to the beneficiaries defined in the Utah statutes, which would be you and your brother (and other siblings if there are others) in equal shares. By the way if your mother didn't leave a will, she didn't really leave the house to anyone.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 6/27/2013
    Powell Potter PLLC
    Powell Potter PLLC | Shawn Potter
    If, before your mother died, she placed your name and your brother's name on her deed to the home as joint tenants with right of survivorship, then you and your brother would be joint owners even if she had no will. Look there first. Secondly, if there was no will, the heirs open a probate proceeding to have the court determine entitlement to your mother's estate.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    D. Miller & Associates | Jeffrey Streett
    If your mother passed away without a will, the house is left to both of you. If you are not on speaking terms, whoever was appointed executor of the estate should sell the property and split the money between you and your brother.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Masson Law Office
    Masson Law Office | Robin Abrahamson Masson
    If your mother died without a will, and she was not married at the time she died, her estate goes to you and your siblings in equal shares. The siblings have equal rights to be appointed Administrator of the estate, and that is done by filing a petition in Surrogate's Court. The Administrator has the duty to sell the assets of the estate and divide the proceeds equally among the other heirs, after payment of all of the funeral costs, debts of the estate, and costs of administration (including statutorily defined "commissions" for the Administrator, based on the value of the estate.) So the short answer is, "No", your brother cannot just put the title in his name. I suggest you contact an attorney who is familiar with estate administration (probate) to help protect your rights.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Charles M. Schiff, Attorney at Law
    Charles M. Schiff, Attorney at Law | Charles M. Schiff
    If the house was titled in your mother's name when she passed away, and if she left no surviving spouse, and if you and your brother are the only children, it will be awarded to both you and your brother, jointly. Your brother cannot legally put the property in his name alone. The estate will need to go through probate for anyone to obtain title to the property.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Stephens Gourley & Bywater | David A. Stephens
    He cannot do it without a court order.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    James Oberholtzer, Attorney at Law
    James Oberholtzer, Attorney at Law | James Oberholtzer
    No, he cannot transfer the house to his name from your mother's name without a Will or a trust. You should check the recorded title and then make a written demand to him.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Martinson & Beason, PC
    Martinson & Beason, PC | Douglas C Martinson II
    He cannot do that unless she had a will leaving it to him or had a deed executed to him before she died. An estate would have to be opened and you given notice of it. You could check with the Probate Court and see if an estate has been filed.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Doland & Fraade | Michael Doland
    No, and if he has you need a lawyer immediately.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Neal M. Rimer, Esquire
    Neal M. Rimer, Esquire | Neal M. Rimer
    If the house was in your Mother's name, then no, your brother cannot just change title and put the house in his name. The only way to change title is to open a probate proceeding and through that process the court will issue an order. That order can then be recorded to change title. Through the probate process, with or without a Will, the court will know who are entitled to the assets in the probate estate. Identifying the beneficiaries is a part of the process. You, or your brother, are possible persons who can file and start the probate process. You should retain a local attorney who is familiar with Wills and Trusts and the probate court and begin the process.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Meissner, Joseph & Palley, Inc.
    Meissner, Joseph & Palley, Inc. | John Palley
    I am sorry for your loss. Legally, based on the facts you give, your brother can not put the house into his name alone. It may be smart to hire a probate attorney, on a limited basis, to monitor the probate and make sure the distribution happens properly.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    THE BROOME LAW FIRM, LLC
    THE BROOME LAW FIRM, LLC | Barry D. Broome
    Even without a Will the estate of the deceased person is distributed through the laws intestacy. That means the state legislature has a state will for the deceased. The estate must pass through probate and each heir must share the estate equally. If the real estate was in both names with rights of survivorship then the property will automatically go to the surviving party. Your financial plan is not complete until it is coordinated with your estate plan. Will your family be provided for when you are gone? Without a Will, the court will decide.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 9/20/2012
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