Tales of a probate sale and a trust sale

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I have a client whose father up and died without a will and no trust in place.  Just to be clear he was in his late 70s. 

1)      Did he do this on purpose (not putting himself in a trust) to see how the heirs fended for themselves?  Was he thinking it would “bring the family together”?

2)      Or was his intelligence such that he was considered a few steers short of a full herd (I’m married to a Texan so I get these expressions all the time) or was he not playing with a full deck (also married to a poker player)?

3)      Or did he fail to predict what he needed to do and do it in a timely fashion namely BEFORE his death (or in some other people’s cases prior to losing the faculty to make the decision)?   Continue reading