Investigating a Stole Inheritance
There are a lot of ways this can happen. So the first question is how did it happen:
- Did someone forge the will document?
- Did the deceased not include you, but they should have?
- Was probate was closed and you didn’t get a chance to object?
- There was no will, and you are a beneficiary, but you got nothing?
Let’s go through these various situations. However, for all but #2, you will want an attorney and a private investigator. The attorney can pursue your claims through the courts while the PI can figure out who took the money and where it went. Together they may be able to get it back for you.
Did someone forge the will document?
If someone forged the will document, you will want to first of all get copies of that document as well as any other versions you know of. Sometimes wills are changed at the last minute legitimately. It’s important to be sure something is wrong with the will document itself.
Who are the beneficiaries if not you? This will also be important to find out. Your attorney and PI can do this for you as well, but you might want to make sure there is definitely something wrong. Let your instinct guide you.
Did the deceased not include you in their will, but they should have?
In this case, there may be nothing to do. A valid will executed correctly by a competent person is pretty strong legally. Not insurmountable, but generally if you aren’t listed in a valid will, then you won’t get anything.
Was probate was closed and you didn’t get a chance to object?
If you are clearly a beneficiary or have a strong argument to be one, there may be an opportunity for you, but this requires extensive research by an attorney. This is one reason why you want to stay in touch with anyone likely to pass who is important to you and vice-versa.
There was no will, and you are a beneficiary, but you got nothing?
If somehow probate moved forward and you should have been a beneficiary, such as in the case there was no will and you are one of three children, then you should have received 1/3 of any assets.
There is a special kind of financial predator out there, one that we call the Caretaker Deceiver, who may use their position to take advantage of someone who is at the end of their life including getting them to change their will. These people actually exist. If you think such a person has affected your life, hire a PI to investigate.
Guardian Deceivers are those with legal control or influence over a person who can be a minor, handicapped, sick, elderly or unable to care for themselves. If they decide to commit fraud, it is often difficult to detect.
Please see our articles on financial predators to better understand what might have happened or is happening. Get an attorney and a PI on your side and go get ‘em!
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Be safe out there!