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jamie513

My Father Lives in NJ but I live in PA - Question on Inheritance Tax on Property

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Hello,

My father is suffering from Lung cancer and it is aggressive. My father created a will through LegalZoom when he was first diagnosed but I have not seen that will. According to conversations we have had, he is excluding my Brother from the Will since they not spoken in 12-15 years. My brother lives in California currently. I live in PA and my father lives in NJ. He has a couple properties. Two in New Jersey and one in New Mexico. None of them have any financial obligations tied to them except for current year taxes. Two of my friend have recently lost loved ones and are both going through nightmares. Our one friend's mother passed away and a son that they had not seen in 20 years and was excluded from the will is now taking everyone to court so "he could get his share". The other friend's grandmother passed away and they are dealing with lawyers because of property tax. The friend with the grandmother has a forclosure and the state is coming to them saying that they can take the grandmother's house from them. Both of them have stressed that I really need to sit down with my father and a lawyer to go through everything.

 

My concerns - What happens if my Brother after all this time thinks he should have any say in what happens to my father's properties?

 

I have a bankruptcy under me and I am concerned that they can take my father's house because of that. I was trying to research but I couldn't find anything specific about NJ vs PA residents and what the laws were regarding that (or if it even matters).

 

Any help is greatly appreciated.

Thank you,

Jamie

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Hello,

My father is suffering from Lung cancer and it is aggressive. My father created a will through LegalZoom when he was first diagnosed but I have not seen that will. According to conversations we have had, he is excluding my Brother from the Will since they not spoken in 12-15 years. My brother lives in California currently. I live in PA and my father lives in NJ. He has a couple properties. Two in New Jersey and one in New Mexico. None of them have any financial obligations tied to them except for current year taxes. Two of my friend have recently lost loved ones and are both going through nightmares. Our one friend's mother passed away and a son that they had not seen in 20 years and was excluded from the will is now taking everyone to court so "he could get his share". The other friend's grandmother passed away and they are dealing with lawyers because of property tax. The friend with the grandmother has a forclosure and the state is coming to them saying that they can take the grandmother's house from them. Both of them have stressed that I really need to sit down with my father and a lawyer to go through everything.

 

My concerns - What happens if my Brother after all this time thinks he should have any say in what happens to my father's properties?

 

I have a bankruptcy under me and I am concerned that they can take my father's house because of that. I was trying to research but I couldn't find anything specific about NJ vs PA residents and what the laws were regarding that (or if it even matters).

 

Any help is greatly appreciated.

Thank you,

Jamie,

jamie513, you should go speak to a attorney and see were it gets you and good luck with everything and i hope your father get better.......

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Printing forms off the internet is not a substitute for estate planning with an attorney, especially if there is a complicated family situation and multiple, multi-state properties. While you can not prevent your brother from contesting a will, there are steps your father can take to protect the majority of the assets of the estate in such a way that it would make it extremely difficult for his other child(ren) to lay claim to them. You and he really need to sit down with an attorney and discuss the various options. Soon. Your past bankruptcy has nothing to do with inheritance. "They", whoever they are, can not prevent you from inheriting.

 

In a nutshell, a will really only deals with the probate estate. That is, any asset which has not specifically been designated to go to a beneficiary. Major assets such as real estate, cars, insurance policies, bank accounts, and investment accounts can and should be set up so that they are not part of the probate estate. Attorney can help guide you and your father as to the best way to accomplish that.

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What happens if my Brother after all this time thinks he should have any say in what happens to my father's properties?

 

We have no possible way of predicting what might happen if your brother simply thinks something.  Any number of things (or nothing at all) might happen if he "thinks he should have [a] say in what happens to [the] properties."

 

 

 

I have a bankruptcy under me and I am concerned that they can take my father's house because of that.

 

I'm not sure what you mean by "have a bankruptcy under me," but I assume it means that, at some unknown point in the past, you filed a petition for bankruptcy.  How long ago did you do that?  Under what Chapter did you file?  Is the case still pending?  If not, what was the outcome?  I also have no idea who "they" are or why you think "they" might be able to take something that isn't yours and may never become yours.

 

 

 

I was trying to research but I couldn't find anything specific about NJ vs PA residents and what the laws were regarding that (or if it even matters).

 

Not really sure what this means.

 

 

 

Both of them have stressed that I really need to sit down with my father and a lawyer to go through everything.

 

The important thing is that your father use his assets to make himself comfortable or otherwise as he sees fit.  If he is as concerned as you seem to be about having his assets preserved for your benefit, then it is important that he consult with an estate planning attorney.  If your bankruptcy is still pending and you are concerned that your father will die before the case is concluded, there are things he can do about that, but that's something for him to discuss with his attorney.

 

 

 

Your past bankruptcy has nothing to do with inheritance. "They", whoever they are, can not prevent you from inheriting.

 

This is all true as phrased.  However, the original post does not rule out the possibility that the BK case is still pending, and it's certainly possible that the BK trustee could lay claim to inherited assets.

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You can not compare your situation to what is happening in the other cases you mentioned--their cases are completely different from yours (the foreclosure means that the home was not paid for in full and still had an outstanding mortgage on it that was not being paid).  But you can learn an overriding principle from other people's probate situations, the main one being that your father needs to have a probate attorney review his will to make sure it meets the legal requirements for his state.  For the most part the will is probably going to be okay as is.  He can ask for a specific clause to be put in to disinherit your brother that will stand up in court.  If brother then decides to sue and has no legal basis for doing so, he would just be wasting money on legal fees to attempt to defend a losing lawsuit.

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To me it sounded like the bankruptcy was in the past, but certainly if that is not the case, the OP needs to consult with an attorney as to how any inherited assets might be affected.

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