Legal Question in Wills and Trusts in Texas

Old Will/Power of Attorney

I have a friend that was hit by a semi and is in the process of dying. His Will states that everything goes to his wife, however, she is dead, then it passes to his children. He also has a durable power of attorney for healthcare in her name. My question is if I were to marry him upon his death bed, as he wants to do, would I become ''the wife'' in this will and inherit the estate?

Also, he says that he has left me a sum of money at a bank, POD, however, all the bank statement shows is his son's name only. The banker says he cannot disclose this information without a death certificate. This is in regards to a six-figure sum, so, is there some way to go about this??

Also, he currently has no power of attorney for financial matters, his son is just waiting for the old man to pass to collect and I am trying to man the shop. Can I get power of attorney for financial after this accident?? The injured sometimes knows what is going on, you have to catch him between illness and medications and he is still somewhat confused. What can I legally do?? Note that all the buzzards are flying around (the son).

Asked on 7/09/08, 11:53 am

1 Answer from Attorneys

Kathryn Perales PMI Oil Tools
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Re: Old Will/Power of Attorney

If you marry him, and/or get a power of attorney while he is in this state, you are asking for a lawsuit. You may decide that it is worth it to do this.

Depending on how the will is worded, you may or may not inherit everything by becoming his wife. Also, any person with capacity can sign a power of attorney.

You should consult with an attorney as soon as possible - time is really of the essence here. You will need to be prepared to prove that your friend was competent and in his right mind and not under coercion or undue influence from you when he married you and/or gave you power of attorney. You may decide to use video and affidavits from uninterested witnesses.

Regarding the bank account, there may be nothing you can do unless your friend is able to go into the bank and change the signature card himself.

Remember that the son (and probably the general public) is going to think that you are the vulture, and you will want to be able to prove that you are not. I certainly recommend consulting with an attorney as soon as possible.

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7/09/08, 5:40 pm

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