To whom it may concern:
My father passed away in December 2009, at 49 years old, due to complications from lung cancer. Unknown to me at the time, his father wrote up a will and had him sign it the morning that they took him off life support. In this will it leaves me, a 19-year-old student, a house with ~$170,000.00 debt on it.
I found out today that they (my grandfather) transferred the deed to the house into my name without ever notifying me of it. Is it legal to sign something over to someone without their knowledge? And, more importantly, how do I go about contesting this will that I believe to be contrived and illegitimate?
Thank you for your time,
Erin B. Smith
1 Answer from Attorneys
You can refuse to accept a gift if you choose to do so. Yes, it is legal to make a gift to someone without their knowledge, however, you can refuse to accept the gift. You can contest the will by opening a probate case in the superior court in the county where your father resided. Go to the self service center, if you want to do it without legal counsel, and you will find instructions and forms to use. I advise you to consult with experienced legal counsel before you decide what to do about everything in this case.