Can his children claim some of the estate? 23 Answers as of September 11, 2013

My father passed away this year 2013. He was involved in two major lawsuits. He did have a power of attorney but we know nothing. My father told us that is was getting two settlements. I’m confused. I need help.

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O'Keefe Legal Services, L.L.C.
O'Keefe Legal Services, L.L.C. | Sean P. O'Keefe
In Maryland, the personal representative of his estate should have the authority to continue the lawsuit and receive settlements, for the benefit of the heirs/beneficiaries. His children may be entitled to the estate and/or settlement if they are beneficiaries in his will or if he died without a will.
Answer Applies to: Maryland
Replied: 9/11/2013
Law Office of Thomas C. Phipps | Thomas C Phipps
Someone will have to file a petition in probate court to open an estate. You will need an attorney who practices probate law in your area.
Answer Applies to: Missouri
Replied: 8/30/2013
Christine Sabio Socrates Attorney at Law | Christine Socrates
Yes, if he was involved in two major lawsuits, then his estate can continue to pursue those lawsuits on his behalf. Any recovery or settlement would pass to his heirs under his will or if he died without a will, under the laws of descent and distribution. As his children, you would be considered his heirs at law.
Answer Applies to: Ohio
Replied: 8/30/2013
Law Office Of Victor Waid
Law Office Of Victor Waid | Victor Waid
You are advised to seek the advice of a probate litigation counsel to see if the lawsuits survived his death and to see if the estate can go forward on his behalf.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 8/30/2013
Stephens Gourley & Bywater | David A. Stephens
If he did not have a will his children would have a claim under Nevada law. If he had a will, his estate would pass according to his will.
Answer Applies to: Nevada
Replied: 8/30/2013
    Law Offices of George H. Shers | George H. Shers
    With his death, any sum for pain and suffering disappears, only damages for out of pocket expenses or losses are allowed. His estate would collect that. By power of attorney do you mean he had an attorney?
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/30/2013
    Frederick & Frederick PLC | James P Frederick
    You do not give enough information. Was your father married at the time of his death? Is there an estate open? If there were lawsuits pending at the time of death, the only way to continue those would be by opening an estate. A personal representative needs to be appointed in order to act on behalf of the estate. If an estate is open, then the PR should be communicating with you and providing you status reports.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/30/2013
    James Oberholtzer, Attorney at Law
    James Oberholtzer, Attorney at Law | James Oberholtzer
    You need to contact the attorneys in the lawsuits and find out what is going on. You will probably also need to open a probate estate; but, talk to the attorneys first.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 8/30/2013
    Goldsmith & Guymon
    Goldsmith & Guymon | Dara Goldsmith
    It depends. You, or the person named in his Will, need to review the litigation files with counsel. To do so you probably need to be appointed as personal representative of the Estate. I urge you to speak with probate counsel who may need to locate the litigation and review the files to advise you on next steps. This information is only intended to give general information in response to an inquiry. It does not establish an attorney client relationship. This response is only based upon the limited facts presented and is merely intended to assist you in determining if you should contact an attorney to provide you with legal advice.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 8/30/2013
    Irsfeld, Irsfeld & Younger LLP | Norman H. Green
    Power of attorney ends with his death. Did he have a will? If he had no will and no surviving spouse, then you kids get his estate.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/30/2013
    Law Office of Patricia A. Simmons
    Law Office of Patricia A. Simmons | Patrica A Simmons
    You should immediately contact a probate attorney. The lawsuits cannot continue until a personal representative has been appointed for your father's estate. In California, if your father died an unmarried man without a will, his children are his heirs. If there is a spouse, she will share in his estate along with his children.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/30/2013
    Estrada Law P.C. | Michele Ungvarsky
    You should probably contact a probate attorney to help you. Also, most courts have websites, look up the cases on your courts website and contact the attorney(s) involved to get information about the cases.
    Answer Applies to: New Mexico
    Replied: 8/30/2013
    Gates' Law, PLLC | Thomas E. Gates
    When your father died, the lawsuits were not under the Estate of your father. So, any recovery would go to his Estate. If he had a will, it would define the distribution of his Estate to the beneficiaries. Otherwise, state law will govern the distribution.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/30/2013
    Peters Law, PLLC
    Peters Law, PLLC | Mark T. Peters, Sr.
    Somebody need to open a probate estate for your father and participate in the lawsuits. If they were for personal injury, they may have disappeared when he died. If they were for something else, the personal representative can finish the settlement process.
    Answer Applies to: Idaho
    Replied: 8/30/2013
    James Law Group
    James Law Group | Christine James
    Your father's estate will go to his children if he has no spouse. If he has a spouse but the marriage was short term, there is a chance the kids will be entitled to something. You are right, you need help.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/30/2013
    Ben T. Liu Law Office
    Ben T. Liu Law Office | Ben T. Liu
    The lawsuits now belong to your father's estate. If his death does not terminate the lawsuits, the settlements should go into the estate. What will then need to probate the estate. Who is taking care of your father's affairs?
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/30/2013
    Durham Jones & Pinegar | Erven Nelson
    Your father's rights in the lawsuits belong to his estate. You need to have the executor of the estate look into the value of the claims.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 8/30/2013
    Law Office of Pamela Braynon | Pamela Y. Braynon
    First off forget about the power of attorney because it died when he died. If he left no will his children are entitle to a share of his estate if he died in Florida.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 8/30/2013
    The Krone Law Firm, LLC | Norman B. Krone
    I am also confused as you do not provide any details. Whose Power of Attorney, for what purpose, what are the lawsuits pertaining to, and other such questions must be answered.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 8/30/2013
    Sebby Law Office
    Sebby Law Office | Jayne Sebby
    The executor of your father's estate will probably want to hire an attorney with experience in dealing with settlements that are not yet part of the estate. The power of attorney ended at the time of your father's death.
    Answer Applies to: Nebraska
    Replied: 8/30/2013
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC | John F Brennan
    I cannot form an opinion on the facts presented, but it is possible, indeed probable, the children could inherit.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/30/2013
    Attorney At Law | James G. Maguire
    The proceeds from the settlements will become part of his estate, distributed according to his will.
    Answer Applies to: Louisiana
    Replied: 8/30/2013
    The Law Office of David L. Leon
    The Law Office of David L. Leon | David L. Leon
    The power of attorney died when your father died. You need to open an estate administration. Did your father have a will?
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 8/30/2013
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