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LaNelle7x

Daughter's rights

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My widowed mother recently died. My mother had alzheimer's disease for the past four years. She began staying with my sister in California when she could not handle herself any longer. My mother received a Social Security pension. My mother had insurance when she became ill but did not have any when she died. My sister stated that she does not have any money to bury her. I am the oldest child and will pay for burial in my mother's home state Texas. My sister may not consent. Do I have legal rights to bring her body to Texas for burial. There was no will.

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Are you saying you won't help out with expenses if mom isn't buried in Texas? Eek.

No particular person has any particular rights over your mom's final burial expenses, but given you are in a different state I doubt there's much you could do if your sister made particular arrangements (at least not short of petitioning a CA court to ask it to let you do X-Y-Z and establishing what your mother's wishes would have been). It's unlikely that any hospital or funeral home will choose to release the body to you over an in-state family member's objections.

But you may be getting ahead of yourself. I'd tell your sister what you're willing to do (but understand that transporting your mom from CA would probably involve a good deal of expense).

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What is your objection to your mother's being buried in California, and what is your sister's objection to her being buried in Texas? (Never mind, rhetorical question.)

Assuming neither you nor your sister have already executed a contract for funeral services, after a certain period of time your mother's remains can be turned over to the county to be disposed of at their expense, probably either by cremation or interment in a pauper's grave. Wouldn't you really rather have something to say about it? You and your sister need to sit down like the mature adults I'm sure you are, and come to an arrangement you both can live with.

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