Legal Question in Wills and Trusts in Georgia

How can we find out who got our inheritance and how can we get it back? We were not notified of our father's death. He passed away in 2008 in Chatham County, GA.

Asked on 6/03/12, 10:24 am

2 Answers from Attorneys

Glen Ashman Ashman Law Office

How do you know you had an inheritance? I'm assuming you're an adult. Adult children, if there is a will, can be disinherited. Estranged children are often disinherited. Adult children also could lose out in other ways (year's support or by the wording of a deed). Since you chose to leave out that information there's no way to answer you. Probate records and land records are public and you can go to the courthouse and look at them.

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Answered on 6/03/12, 12:24 pm

I agree with Attorney Ashman. You also don't inidcate what your father owned at the time of his death. Depending on what he had and how it was titled, there may have been nothing for your to inherit.

Did your father have a spouse? Do you know if an estate was ever probated? I would start by contacting the probate court in Chatham County to see if an estate was ever probated for your father. If so, get a copy of the will, petition for probate, inventory and accounting and have a probate attorney in Chatam County review it for you.

If, as I suspect, no estate was ever probated, then you need to see what your father owned. Did he own land? Then check the register of deeds to see if it was owned as a joint tenancy with right of surivorship with someone else. If the land was owned as a joint tenancy with right of survivorship, then the land would pass to the survivor. What else was owned? The fact that your father died and you had no knowledge is troubling and raises many questions.

If you can find assets, then you may be able to do something. However, litigation is very costly and you need to see if it is going to be worthwhile to pursue in court. Again, you need to taqlk with a probate attorney but first you need to gather as much information as possible.

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Answered on 6/03/12, 11:41 pm

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