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I am 67 and my husband is 6 years older. we have no kids. My husband has heart failure related to being a combat Vet in Viet Nam. We left our home and my job about 9 years ago to help care for my mom and dad in another state. They were living in their own home. They moved there in 1997 to be closer to my sister/her husband and my parents' two grandson. My parents both began to experience major health issues over 10 years ago. My brother-in-law is very self-centered and was constantly complaining that I wasn't helping out enough, so my husband and I moved to the state where they all lived. I was very close to both of my parents. My father died about 6 years ago and my mom remained at her home with my sister and I helping her out with shopping, chores, etc. My two grown nephews did very little for her before or after my dad died. In the spring of this year, my youngest nephew murdered my sister by stabbing her to death in the backyard of the home in which she, her husband and he lived. My mother, who now had mild dementia and was 94, was so traumatized she said she could no longer go back home. We gladly brought her to live with us. My mom had a small amount of money in stocks of which my sister and I were named beneficiaries. My sister listed her two sons as her beneficiaries. But, my sister preceded my mom in death. My b-in-law started nosing into my mom's money and trying to tell me what to do with it, when etc. My mom wanted me to be the sole beneficiary as she is old fashioned and I never asked nor suggested she do this. My brother in law and oldest nephew have caused so many problems for us...nasty people. Called Adult Protective Services on us( but we were caring for my mom very well), stalked me and took pictures of me when I was at a casino with my own money on a Sat. a.m., accused me of lying, etc. etc. etc. None of this was true. Additionally, they all bullied together insisting they wanted to see my mom and we were told by her doctor and nurses to keep her away from outsiders due to Covid. My brother in law threated to call my employer if I didn't get those kids my mom's money(mom isn't even deceased ) and then wrote me a 3 page letter calling me a bitch and just attacking every area of my life. It was abusive. He was also abusive to my sister but she kept going back. Brother in law has turned my sister's family against me. So, why should I have to give my youngest nephew any of my mom's money when she dies since he murdered my sister and my mother was not the one who made him a secondary beneficiary, before she was murdered. I am so sick of this family and I do not have any contact with them because they are such abusive people. My mom does not have much money and we are saving it in case she needs to go to assisted living. They don't see to give a .... about my mom. Only call once in a blue moon and she ever said that if she didn't see them she "wouldn't die" because she hardly ever saw them before my sister was killed. What do I do about this money stuff? I want to be fair but I have been threatened, bullied, by b-in-law and his flying monkeys and it seems all they care about is my mom's money. She has very little and they think she has a lot, I think because she had more years ago but sister and b-in-law lived above their means and were always "borrowing" money from my mom who is almost poverty level, sometimes paying it back and sometimes not. We never did that. This is such a mess. Comments?

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I don't think grandson who killed your sister can inherit. He cannot profit in any way from his mother's death since he killed her. I would get a restraining order. I think you have good grounds.

I would lose all contact with these people. Set up a PO Box so your address is not out there. Change ur phone numbers. Set ur phone so only calls from your contact list will ring thru. They will go to VM but you can then block the call or delete.

You need to protect yourself. Since Mom now has Dementia you may not be able to change her Will. You should be able to get a copy from the lawyer who drew it up. If Mom understands what is going on, you maybe able to have her do a new Will overriding the one in place now. Same with beneficiaries. She maybe able to change them. Nothing is written in stone.

Your Mom is alive. No one is entitled to her money. Seems BIL has gotten his share over the years. I don't know where people get the idea that grands need to inherit. My daughters will inherit. If they want their children to have anything, then they can leave it to them. For now, if one of my girls die, the other inherits. I may change that eventually but that is how it is now.

I think you may want to consult with a lawyer. I also hope you have POA.
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Reply to JoAnn29
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Piper, I was puzzled by your response so did some fact checking.  I think b/c I used the term "beneficiary", it was interpreted to be someone who inherited directly by virtue of specific language in a document.    I was thinking when I wrote that post in terms of heirs.    Either term can apply to someone who inherits through a will.  

I don't disagree; jointly held accounts, with rights of survivorship, pass directly to the named co-owner, or person who might be the named recipient but wasn't a co-owner during the lifetime of the then deceased person.

Thanks for your assistance in clarifying these issues.
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Reply to GardenArtist
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Garden Artist, beneficiaries on certain types of accounts are paid at death and never go through probate.

Even property can be that way. If a deed is recorded with rights of survivorship then the property transfers to the co-owners at death and the property does not go through probate.

In the OPs case, she is the only beneficiary now on the stocks. I don't know if other assets are involved, if so and because of the abusive and crazy BIL a new will may be in order if the mom is competent to sigh.

To the OP- I am so sorry for your sisters death. Please take care as you grieve this loss.
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Reply to ExhaustedPiper
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I am so very sorry that you lost your sister and now, you have to put up with these people.

I also agree with BarbBrooklyn. If would be the time for a new will. There are a lot of bone headed people that think if someone has money in the Stock Market it must be at least six figures, but that isn't always the case!! I would setup a caregiving contract. Just make sure everything is done "by the book." You can bet that your BIL will want to go through everything with a fine tooth comb, whether he has a right to or not.

You also need to get a "Personal Protection Order" on your BIL and nephew. The letter should do it and tell them that "you are afraid for your life."

I am sorry that you have to go through this and that you lost your sister.

Hugs!!!
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Reply to Shell38314
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I agree with Barb Brooklyn on the need for a will.   In addition, as she mentioned, potential heirs can be disinherited through an "in terrorem" clause.   It allots a certain amount of money, such as $1.00 to a potential heir, but that's all.    This needs to be prepared by an attorney to make sure it's not contestable.   One of the conditions, stated in a will, is that if the heir contests his/her $1.00, he/she then gets nothing. 

MJ, all the wills I've seen prepared by attorneys for whom I worked specifically stated that any and all prior wills were rendered null and void when the new will was prepared.    So that addresses anything that might have been done, even if someone can't locate the will.

MACinCT, could you elaborate on this?  I'm confused.  Beneficiaries are named in a Will, and that dictates who gets what.   Or were you thinking of who might automatically be a beneficiary just by virtue of relationship?

"Benefieierys did not count in the will distribution, in fact the court insisted that those could not be changed for distribution."

Justice, have you considered requesting a restraining order against the family men who are harassing you, and your mother (whether they are or not, the protection would be desirable).    If I were you, I'd document everything they said and did, with times, dates, copies of any texts, e-mails, etc.   You could use it as support for getting a TRO, or requesting a longer lasting restraining order.

Your story is quite sad, yet frightening.   It must be hell trying to cope with such harassment from such nasty men.     I'll probably get criticized for this suggestion, but have you considered taking a Judo or other self protection class, or even learning to shoot a weapon, just for self defense?  

And do you have good alarms at the house?
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Shell38314 Dec 19, 2020
I was taught some self defense moves and I'll tell you what, it made me feel a whole lot better when I worked in bars! It gives you some security knowing you can handle yourself. If you know what I mean!
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I am so very sorry for the loss of your sister.

I can’t imagine how awful that must have been for you and your family.

I am glad that you have moved far away and your sister’s murderer is in jail.

I think speaking to an attorney is money well spent.

Your mom deserves to have her money distributed according to her wishes.
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Reply to NeedHelpWithMom
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First as I’m understanding this your sisters husband has no legal standing or skin in the game here, your mom split her estate between her two daughters and your sister made her two sons her beneficiaries not her husband so I would refuse to deal with the BIL, tell him he has no say or standing and report him to police every time he threatens or even Perseus you. Get a restraining order if you have to, he has no claim to visitation with your mom either and while normally I would say as family he should if he wants it, in this case I would shut him out and that shouldn’t be difficult even if you have to do that legally.

Any discussion about inheritance or how to split moms estate up, who get how much is pointless while she is alive, no one knows if there will be anything left to split and your sisters death certainly doesn’t initiate the dispersal of her moms estate while mom is still alive. If your sister had money to leave them fine but that has nothing to do with you or your mom unless you are named in your sisters will. As your sisters beneficiaries, secondary when it comes to your moms estate, they don’t have any say about how her money is spent now while she is alive unless of course your mom gave them that legal authority so again tell them to butt out, they have no standing. If it’s possible and worth it the suggestion to simply get a new will in place is a good one, again the husband (BIL) has no standing to contest that, the brothers might but one is being tried for murdering his mother and it will cost them money and time to contest this.

What concerns me most here is that you seem to feel the need to explain and prove yourself. I hear that this BIL (SOB seems a better fit) has kind of put you on the defensive but your giving him an in when you allow him to condition you to explain yourself. You DO NOT need to explain yourself to this guy or his sons if they are going to abuse you or their grandmother. They have no standing with your sister gone unless you give it to them. It has obviously been a special kind of hell you and your family have been living through for years by the sounds of it and it kind of revolved around your sister because you loved her, her passing does not mean it now revolves around her husband or her sons unless you or your mom choose to let it. You have every right, maybe even responsibility for the care of your mom to put your foot down and cut one or all of them out of your lives if you want.

My grandmother left her estate to her 4 children, equally (there are some other details but not important here) one of my uncles passed before her estate was settled, in fact over 10 years later and it still isn’t settled because there is a large amount of land to sell, his heirs are his two daughters. My mother is coexecutor with her long time attorney and friend of the family. Every time there is an offer or push to sell the property the three siblings are consulted and my mom insists everyone agree even though she and the attorney have the power to decide. My cousin who splits her fathers 1/4 with her 1/2 sister apparently contacts the attorney regularly to get updates and voice her opinion even though she clearly has no say. This all according to the attorney, I had no idea she was so involved. Lol Anyway my point is they all only have the power you give them rite now and since it sounds like they only power they want is to make everyone miserable, don’t give them any, let them go make each other or someone e,we miserable. You do not need to justify yourself to anyone, especially them. You are a wonderful daughter, your husband sounds like a special SIL and you were a loving sister keep trusting your heart and enjoying the time with your mom and DH, you will know what to do. The rest is noise.
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MJ1929 Dec 20, 2020
Your cousin most certainly does have a say if your mother gives the other siblings one. She is an owner as a result of her father's death, along with her half-sister.

Your mom should get that estate wrapped up sooner than later, because the same thing happened in my mother's family, and as all the heirs died off one-by-one leaving their shares of the land to their kids, there were 24 owners by the time the ranch land was finally sold. It was no party getting consensus from 24 separate owners with different ideas about selling family-owned land, but finally it came down to people who weren't ranchers not wanting to pay endless property taxes on it. That land was first passed down in 1959, and it was finally sold in 2003. Don't do that if you can help it.
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Is mom still competent enough to execute a new will making you the sole beneficiary?

If she is, that is the course I would take; she should seek legal advice about properly disinheriting the BIL and grandchildren if that is her intent. Simply leaving them out of the will won't do it and leaves it open to being disputed.

If mom has dementia, you can be almost certain that she will need NH care at the end of her life and there will be no money left to inherit.

Is she paying you for caregiving or for room and board? You might consider having her set up a caregiving contract with you.
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Reply to BarbBrooklyn
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If your mother is at all competent, she needs to rewrite her will. Do it correctly, with the help of an attorney, because a handwritten will (a "holographic will") is very easy to contest. You don't want that.

A new will supercedes any previous wills, and it isn't a bad idea to use that statement in the new will. She should also mention those relatives she is specifically excluding, like the murdering nephew and the brother-in-law. Get it notarized, too.

An attorney can write a good, ironclad will for not much money.
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MJ1929 Dec 20, 2020
There's also no need to leave the token $1 to those she excludes. Simply mentioning the names of whom she's excluding is plenty.
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First you are correct that it is her money. You are the only beneficiery and if she does not change it then so be it. You will not have to worry about probate if it is a small amount. I just finished as executor of a large estate. Benefieierys did not count in the will distribution, in fact the court insisted that those could not be changed for distribution.
You are being threatened. Start collecting instances. Save the letter. Report threats to the police. You may choose to go to the station to file a written report. Usually you are handed a copy of each report. If APS comes knocking, you have those reports. This is to create a paper trail if anything happens to you. Try to use your cell phone and record him but make sure you tell him on the recording that you are doing it.
Do notify your employer of your threats. I worked in a large place with great security and they were very protective of ex husbands making threats to the point of arrest.
Your next issue is to get a retraining order, especially if you feel threatened.
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Reply to MACinCT
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So the nephew who murdered his mother is worried about getting an inheritance, is that what I'm reading? And so is his father? I'd say the least of their worries should be about such a thing, but what do I know?

Ask your mother now how she would like her assets disbursed when she passes away. Have her wishes written up into a will and leave it at that. It would be nice to see your mother leave one crisp dollar bill to each of these 'men' in your family, and the rest of what would be their 'fair share' to an animal shelter.

My condolences over the loss of your sister, and for having such a terrible lot of people in your family.
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Reply to lealonnie1
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I think you are correct in your statement "this is such a mess". Quite honestly I cannot even follow it. If there is any chance at all it may lie in family mediation. I include some resources below that Geaton posted on AC some time ago.
Family Mediation sources online:
Mediate.org
Directories of Mediators:
APFMnet.org (Academy of Professional Family Mediators)
ACRnet.org (Assn for Conflict Resolution).
Wishing you the best of luck.
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Justice1 Dec 19, 2020
I may not have written my issue concisely and that may be why you cannot follow it. I don't want family mediation because the men are too abusive. My oldest nephew always want to talk to my husband and refused to talk to me. My sister's husband is abusive and was verbally/emotionally abusive to my sister. But, thanks for the info.
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Stay clear away from all of them. Do not have anything to do with someone who murdered your sister. Hope he is in jail, How terrible. My brother thought my father had a million dollars when he died. He was a saver but did not have that much money. He thought I should give him his share of his inheritance and he felt entitled. I was firm and said it is moms money for her care and left it at that. The remainder of the money goes to you and your sister and not your sisters sons. I am so sorry about your sister. I would call the police and protective services if they keep bothering you.
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Justice1 Dec 19, 2020
He is in jail. We have moved 800-plus miles from sister's family. I only had one sister and she was murdered. Mom is still alive and we are saving her money in case she ends up in assisted living...hoping not but just being careful. I have filed at least one police report in the past. Adult protective services was on our side, so to speak and we were not in any trouble. We even had home health care RNs coming in our home for months who said I was giving my mom "excellent" care and she was "thriving" with us. Thanks for the response. I would never, ever have thought this would happen to my sister...she was a good person and did so much for others. I will never get over this.
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I am so very sorry for the tragic death of your sister. I presume that the nephew who murdered her is now incarcerated?

I think you would do well to consult (with your mother) and elder care attorney who can advise on mom's current will and how to best protect mom and you from this avaricious and abusive family.
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Reply to BarbBrooklyn
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Justice1 Dec 19, 2020
Thanks for the response. We already talked to an attorney. I don't know where my mom's will is because my sister took care of a lot of mom's paperwork after dad died and it is with my brother-in-law now. I guess I wrote on here because my b-in-law is so good at verbally abusing me, accusing me of everything under the sun, etc. and looks like it does cause just a few seeds of doubt, occasionally. It really is an abusive family. My sister told my mom and me countless times over the years that her husband was a narcissist, controlling, self-centered and she was "afraid of his temper." She told my mom that her husband grabbed one or both of my nephews by the throat and slammed them up against a wall years ago. I don't think he physically abused her but emotionally..big time. We were not even allowed to use the words "money" or "payday" or anything related to money when we visited with her at her housed. She told me that he controlled the money..she worked full time. She was a professional and sought legal help to divorce him as recently as 4 years ago but her reeled her back in. Thank you for the kind comments. The nephew who murdered her is in jail and hasn't had a trial/conviction yet. He does have some mental health issues but he knows right from wrong. It was brutal...came up behind her in the backyard by their pool and stabbed her in the neck twice....one stabbing was to her carotid artery. She died quickly, and that is my only solace. He left her in a pool of blood while he sauntered(didn't run) down the street. I feel like I am in the Twilight Zone.
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