So here's the deal: We take the prospective client's call. The caller fears that her father's careful estate planning has been derailed by the undue influence of her non-working brother. The sacrifices that her parents made in raising their family and protecting their home and earnings are little appreciated by her drug or alcohol-addicted sibling.
The caller's parents often said that their home and their assets were "for the family, for us all." The caller and her two siblings knew this to be true. When their mother died their father carried on as best he could and they helped him and tried to alleviate his loneliness. Now that their father died they've tried to gather his assets together and start and orderly administration of his estate. She and her sister have been blindsided by her brother's refusal to let them gather any documents or even to get into the family home. The brother says that the family home is now his house. The sisters have now discovered that their brother influenced their mentally and physically vulnerable father to transfer his house and bank accounts to their brother. Their brother did this just two months before their father died. The sisters know that the root cause of this conduct is their brother's addiction to alcohol and drugs coupled with his failure to earn his way through life. Now the sisters feel left behind.
How can we help? It is important that we start with first principles: Our prospective client deserves better. She has a right to force her brother to be accountable. Conduct rewarded is conduct repeated, and she and her sister do not want her brother's bad conduct to be rewarded.
There is a right way to do things and a wrong way. The right way to challenge the brother's conduct includes a civil elder financial abuse action as well as appropriate probate court proceedings. The brother's wrongful conduct has effectively disinherited his sisters from their father's estate. While they have been blindsided and left behind, you and I both know that our community should not tolerate the brother's bad conduct. We all suffer if such conduct goes unchecked.
The bottom line: California has a number of laws that are designed to protect elders and to prevent further harm to elders. Hackard Law works to apply these laws and to optimize the recovery against wrongdoers.
If the situation that I've described sounds familiar, call us at Hackard Law. You can decide if it's time for us to get to work to protect your interest. We can be reached at 916 313-3030. We look forward to speaking with you.