Legal Question in Wills and Trusts in Michigan

mother's will

Our mother passes and all of a sudden my niece gets everything! In the will it states the reason we were left out of the will was because we didn't take her to the doctors or for her cataract operation. What???..and left one dollar (which was filled in AFTER this hand drawn will was typed.

My sister lives in Miami, Florida. I live a couple hours a way. My mother was staying with my niece in Birmingham, Mi. (mother's home was in Ky.) and was diagnosed with terminal cancer and passed away this year (Jan 04.)

There was a quit claim deed signed four months before mother died and of course, the house went to the niece, which we didn't know anything about. Nothing.

All of a sudden in October, my mother stops talking to my sister and me out of the blue. The niece is not giving us anything of our parents (dad passed in 95)...nothing. My sister and I went to visit her at that time..no words from our mother to us.

We thought that was nuts because SHE WAS dying. Had she forgotten? My niece didn't notify us that she was in her last stages and only called the morning she actually died.

It was horrifying!!

Could this be undue influence? We have no idea what in the world went on. We are in shock!!!

Asked on 12/07/04, 11:53 pm

2 Answers from Attorneys

William Stern William Stern, P.C.
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Re: mother's will

It is quit possible that your mother's brain function was compromised at the time she signed these documents. You should see a good probate lawyer. Bill Stern 248-353-9400

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12/08/04, 6:57 am
Blake Lipman Law Office of Blake P. Lipman
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Re: mother's will

It could be undue influence, but I would need more info. Despite you disagreeing with the final bequest, a court may see the disposition as natural. That is, the niece cared for your mother at the end, and your mother may have had a special affection for her. It is completely legal to disinherit your children and by mentioning you in her will with a nominal bequest, she prevents a claim by you that you were accidentally forgotten. For more info, please contact my office at (248)851-3171.

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12/09/04, 1:56 pm

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