I'm not sure who I need to speak to OR how to go about this. My mother was involved in an accident in 2020, I think it

Expert's Assistant chat
Customer: I'm not sure who I need to speak to OR how to go about this.My mother was involved in an accident in 2020, I think it was and before she could collect the settlement money she passed away. She passed away November 2, 2021. She had NO WILL. She was Homeless/Transient BUT was collecting documents through a case worker to receive her settlement. Unfortunately, she passed away before she was able to obtain it.I am her next of kin (ONLY child) and I need to find out how to collect her settlement money that her personal injury attorney is withholding from me. I was told BY THEM they needed an Executor of Estate (I believe that's what they asked for), but as she passed with no Will, I don't exactly know how that works. She literally had NOTHING as she was living on the streets since 2008.
JA: Since estate law varies from place to place, can you tell me what state this is in?
Customer: Texas
JA: What documents or supporting evidence do you have?
Customer: Not sure
JA: Is there anything else the Lawyer should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: I think that's all right now
Answered by Aaron Esq. in 7 mins 7 months ago
imglogo
Aaron Esq.
10+ years of experience
logo

2576 Satisfied customers

Expert in: Family Law, Legal, Estate Law, Real Estate Law, Criminal Law, Employment Law, Business Law, Consumer Protection Law, Bankruptcy Law, Traffic Law, Personal Injury Law.

logoBack
logologo
Aaron Esq.
logo
logo
2576 Satisfied customers
logo
10+ years of experience
imglogo
Aaron Esq.
10+ years of experience
logo

2576 Satisfied customers

Jessica

Jessica

Consultant

31,131 Satisfied customers

Pearl avatar
Lawyer's, Assistant
116 Lawyers are online right now.
img

Aaron Esq., Expert

Hi.  I have been practicing law for over 35 years.
img

Aaron Esq., Expert

Please give me a little time while I check on something for you.

img

Aaron Esq., Expert

Did you mother have a living spouse when she died?

Customer
No she did not
Customer
She had a 'boyfriend' that she was with for many years, but he disappeared a couple years back and has been presumed deceased.
img

Aaron Esq., Expert

Boyfriend has no rights.

Customer
They weren't married, though they may have claimed to be. Unfortunately I cannot recall that as we werent 'CLOSE'
img

Aaron Esq., Expert

Since ther is no will, Mom's property passes under the law of intestate succession.  Under that law, if there was no legal spouse, the surviving children (you) get everything.

img

Aaron Esq., Expert

That includes money due to be paid for a lawsuit settlement.

Customer
That is what I thought to begin with. BUT the P.I attorney is being difficult and is NOT allowing me to get her settlement and says I need Executor of Estate or something of the like.
Customer
or Administrator ? i think that may be the same thing, im not sure. they are VERY abrupt and kinda like a puppy mill of law, pushing cases in and out ALL the time
img

Aaron Esq., Expert

However, technically, the settlemen tfunds go to the estate, not to you.  So, the procedure is, you will have to be appointed by the court as administrator of the estate.  Once that happens, the money would be paid to the estate, and then the administrator pays it to you.

Customer
Would that automatically be me? I am the only heir, and no one else had/has anything to do with her.
img

Aaron Esq., Expert

Please forgive typos.  I a a very good lawyer, but a bad and slow typer.

img

Aaron Esq., Expert

The Court should appoint you as administrator under these circumstances.

Customer
That is very okay! I understand, If i had the extra funds, i would have opted in for a phone call but right now, everything is extremely limited for me
img

Aaron Esq., Expert

No problem.  The invitation for a call came from the JA bot, not from me.

img

Aaron Esq., Expert

Does the above answer your question, please?

Customer
Do I need to go to my local courthouse for this? or do I need to find a local attorney that will work on contingency?
Customer
The PI attorney wouldnt even tell me the settlement amount so i could plan this out better. It LESS THAN 20k i would imagine, BUT i have no way of knowong
img

Aaron Esq., Expert

Legally, you can do it yourself.  Teh Court clerks's should be able to walk you through the process.  Of course, you can hire an attorney if you wish to.  Probate work is usually done on an hourly basis.

img

Aaron Esq., Expert

He wouldn't tell you because since as of now you are not the administrator, you have no right to know, and by the settlement agreement, the amount is likely confidential.

Customer
it would be better for me to do it alone? Im unsure where my local courts are.
img

Aaron Esq., Expert

Just google texas courts in your county.

img

Aaron Esq., Expert

What county are you in?

img

Aaron Esq., Expert

I can easily google it for you

Customer
Cameron County, Tx
Customer
what is the time frame on a process like this? is there a statute of limitations to collect settlements?
Customer
Considering she had no debts, other relatives stepping in, etc would this be a faster process?
img

Aaron Esq., Expert

974 E. Harrison St.-Judicial Building
Brownsville Texas, 78520

img

Aaron Esq., Expert

Does the above answer your question, please?

Customer
thank you forthe location
Customer
Should I go in person? or make a call and get the ball rolling?
img

Aaron Esq., Expert

They won't do anything over the phone.  Go and bring ID, death certificate.

Customer
I do not have a death certificate. Im unsure what the status is on that at the moment.
img

Aaron Esq., Expert

Without a death certificate, you can't be appointed administrator.

img

Aaron Esq., Expert

If you have problems/issues later, I would be happy to help.

img

Aaron Esq., Expert

If there is nothing else now, I wish you the very best. If you have any additional questions, please feel free to post a new separate question to Just Answer for me, Aaron Esq., only. Just Answer does not charge extra for that. I usually do Just Answer only on weekends and sometimes briefly late at night, because I have a full time in office job.

img

Aaron Esq., Expert

You may receive an email from Just Answer asking if you would like to rate and/or tip, if you wish.

Ask a lawyer and get your legal questions answered.
See all Legal Questions
img
How it works
logoAsk for help, 24/7
Ask for help, 24/7
Members enjoy round-the-clock access to 12,000+ verified Experts, including doctors, lawyers, tech support, mechanics, vets, home repair pros, more.
logoExpert will respond in minutes
Expert will respond in minutes
After you reach out, we match you with an Expert who specializes in your situation. Talk, text, chat, whichever you prefer.
logoSave time & money
Save time & money
No scheduling hassles, missing time from work, or expensive consults.
A JustAnswer membership can save you significant time and money each month.
img
logo 593 Verified lawyers, 10+ years of experience
DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on Askalawyeroncall.com are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. Askalawyeroncall.com is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response as proposing specific action or addressing your specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances should be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on any information received from an Expert, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains. The responses above are from independent, freelance Experts, who are not employed by Askalawyeroncall.com . The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credentials of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service.
Explore law categories
Powered by JustAnswer