If your parents recently passed away, and the estate doesn't seem to be in order, you need to hire a probate attorney. This is especially important if other family members want to fast-track the will by avoiding the probate process altogether. There are times when probate court isn't necessary, such as when the will is not contested, and everything is in order. But, if there's any question about your parents' estate, you owe it to yourself and to your parents to work with a probate attorney. Here are four signs that you need to hire a probate attorney right away.
You've Found Last Minute Loans
If you've been going through your parents' financial records, and you've discovered that a sibling borrowed a substantial amount of money, you need to talk to a probate attorney. This is especially true if there's no evidence that the money was being paid back, or if the money was borrowed shortly before your parents passed away. There could be some fraud involved in the loans. If that's the case, a probate attorney can help you to recover the money.
There's Evidence of Forgery
If you've discovered changes to your parents' estate plans, and the signatures don't match previous documents, it's time to consult a probate attorney. It's not uncommon for siblings to use forgery as a way to alter previous estate plans, especially those that aren't favorable to them. If you suspect that your parents' final estate plans were forged, probate can help you to uncover the forgery before those documents are accepted by the court.
Your Siblings Worked Against You
If you were written out of your parents' will, or the will was changed to your detriment at the last minute, you need to seek legal representation from a probate attorney. Your siblings may have worked against you in an effort to get your parents to change their will. If this has happened, a probate attorney can go to court on your behalf.
There's the Possibility of Coercion
If there's evidence that your parents were coerced to make changes to their will during the final days of their lives, you need to speak to an attorney as soon as possible. This is especially important if your parents were isolated from the rest of the family by one specific sibling.
Don't take chances with your parents' estate. If you suspect wrongdoing on the part of your siblings, speak to a probate attorney in your area.