“Am I crazy?” After my mother died, my cousin stole her designer purse and my aunt stole eight paintings from her home.

My mother passed away three months ago after a long and devastating decline from dementia. This devastated me and my immediate family. I also had to quit my job during this time. Her mother passed away less than a month after being transferred to the memory ward and I am still deeply saddened. Her sisters and their children came to the funeral.

My extended family felt entitled to look through my mom’s paintings, purses, jewelry, and everything else.

One cousin even took one of her mother’s designer purses to give to her sister (who didn’t come to the funeral).

If I said anything about how tasteless this was, or how it hurt me, they dismissed me as greedy and overly sensitive. I currently have eight paintings from my mother’s house hanging in her house. I have worked to accept it and get over it. But lately it’s really escalated.

father has money I don’t Due to high rent and student loan debt, I live paycheck to paycheck — not to mention the recent unemployment situation (I recently started a new job). My aunt and her boyfriend recently visited my father at his condo in Florida. Dad told them I was getting my mom’s car because mine was getting old and unreliable.

“My aunt’s boyfriend called me and asked me what I wanted to do with my current car.”

My aunt’s boyfriend contacted me and asked me what I wanted to do with my current car, considering it was in my late mother’s car. To be honest, she hadn’t given it much thought, so she was a little taken aback. He also sent me a message on Facebook asking me to call him urgently.

My boyfriend said his sister was in financial trouble and needed a new car. He then asked how much he wanted for my car. I was afraid people would be judged if I asked if I could get a car in the market to please people, so they said they could get it. A few days later I told him I couldn’t have the car and he apologized for saying he could.

The next morning I was awakened by an onslaught of emails and a call from another aunt (Aunt #2). Aunt #2 texted that I was being unfriendly and needed to explain why I decided not to give the car away for free and Aunt #1 was sobbing. It taught me not to go back to words (I’m 33).

Am I crazy or am I being emotionally exploited and coerced? Am I wrong if I tell them I don’t owe a car?


dear weary,

Contact a real estate planning attorney and a locksmith. If your parents are divorced and you are the only surviving child, your mother’s estate belongs to you under intestate law. In other words, if there is no will. It is not only unethical for your cousin or her aunt to loot her house for valuables, it is also illegal.They are trespassing and must go through probate. Stealing assets.

If there was a will, your mother likely filed it with the probate court in the county where you lived. Contact the probate court and the court clerk’s office with the date she died to see if a will has been filed. The court then determines whether the will is valid. If there is no will and you are her only child, her property will be yours.

You can also contact your family’s attorney or financial advisor to find out about life insurance, deeds to your mother’s home, if your mother owns them, and your retirement account. Statements mailed to her home, etc. , the information about her old bank account should help. Policy Locator Service It may be useful for policies developed after 1996.

Who is the executor or trustee of this property? If a family member already had property from his late mother’s home, that person can and should be removed from the role. . As part of the probate, a complete inventory of the deceased mother’s assets is required. If probate is in progress, these items are not yours or theirs at this time and should be returned.

Unfortunately, inheritance theft and embezzlement are all too common. Family members often rummage through the dead person’s home, taking everything from jewelry to automobiles and anything else they believe they have a right to. This is your legacy and these relatives are vultures and bullies. Please report this looting to your lawyer.

And now listen carefully to me and repeat after me: You owe no one. You are not obliged to explain to your relatives. There is no obligation to account for the mother’s property. No need to answer the phone. (That’s why the tech gods of Silicon Valley invented the “block” button.) It’s your choice. choose freedom

“If the executor or trustee is a family member who already has property from his late mother’s home, that person can and should be removed from the role.”

Your relatives may see you as someone who can be easily manipulated, blackmailed, duped, coerced, or (again) robbed. Just because it happened brazenly, shamelessly, and overtly is nothing more than what it is. Your family is stealing from your mother’s fortune. They are stealing your legacy.

Requesting your car is the number one cherry. You he is 33 years old. If you don’t start standing up for yourself now, you’ll be forced to spend your whole life. You can tell people to back off. Simply put, “I just lost my mom. I hope you stop calling me because it’s a hard time for me.” Push the button. No explanation needed.

Selfish, greedy, and opportunistic people cannot be reasoned with. You can talk to them and they will ring around you.Belongs to another person.

Finally, don’t tell people about personal things. That includes your father, who clearly cannot keep the information confidential. If relatives or friends ask you what you own or what you plan to do with your mother’s property, know that it is in the hands of your real estate attorney and is private. Please tell.

Don’t do things because you want to be liked or because you’re afraid of offending people. Then you will be held hostage by the questions, whims, and demands of others for the rest of your life. Your life is no longer yours. It’s better to be strong and love yourself than to always tolerate people who think only of themselves.

Yoyou Email The Moneyist with your financial and ethical questions at qfottrell@marketwatch.com and follow Quentin Fottrell. twitter.

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