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If you want to put this property in your father's name, you need a lawyer. (If you want a different answer, ask a different question.) You can't pretend there wasn't a will without lying in sworn documents. What will probably be required is proof of death, a copy of the will, and quit claims from the disclaiming heirs.

It will cost a lot less in attorney's fees to do this right the first time. Pay now or pay more later to straighten out a mess.

phil, you rock and i respect your willingness to answer my question. i'm not sure if i can really ask a *different* question, but if you have the patience, I would like to ask *more* questions to clarify what you've said so far.

first, i understand the issue family emotions, etc. believe me, i do. and I want to do the right thing. which brings me to your " get a lawyer comment"

you said, What will probably be required is proof of death, a copy of the will, and quit claims from the disclaiming heirs.

fair enough, i'll assume that what my dad is telling me is on the straight and narrow and he can get his siblings to get the quit claims.

my question is,

"what is the lawyer going to do?" what is it that is so "magical" about a lawyer? I mean, if all the lawyer is going to do is file the proof of death, copy of will and quit claims, then, why can't we do that and move on?

something tells me there's an interim step there....??

phil, I'm not sure if your first comment about DIY estate planning was meant to be taken at face value or if you were kind of jesting me that maybe I *shouldn't* be trying to learn this stuff for myself... I have a few older people in my lives and I figure I'm going to have to deal with it sooner or later, the only difference is that if i'm trying to deal one of *my* parents estates in the future, i'm going to have a lot *more* emotions going on and i'd rather figure out what's going on ahead of time.

so, if you are truly supportive of the DIY mentality (within reason - eg, doing it "right"), then please help me understand what it is i'll need to ask the lawyer to do for me.

i've had very bad experiences w/ lawyers who charge me to do their own research and end up doing it wrong.

also, by responding to me on the boards, hopefully, you can help someone else figure this out too.

the irony does not escape me that i'm asking you to help me to understand something that a lawyer would charge $250/hour to explain, and I'm appreciative, and simply respond by saying, "give and take is what makes the Fool so cool" :-)

..and i'll pick up a NOLO book on settling a will this weekend from the library so i don't keep asking you stupid/obvious questions. ...i just need a little pointing in the right direction and you'll be amazed at how fast a learner i am.

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