[Legal, Inheritance] Father of half-sister passed away in the D.R. But she lives in the mainland US

obiuno

Member
Jan 2, 2002
30
1
6
Hello folks,

I hope this is the appropriate forum for me to ask this question; if not, please direct me to the appropriate place. The situation is as follows: My half-sister father passed away and she lives in New Jersey (the father used to live in Santiago). She was not close to her late father not because of her choice but because the old man abandon her and her brother (who also lives in the mainland) after he divorced her mother.

He remarried and set up a business in Santiago and apparently did very well for a time; he also had two kids with his second wife and even though my sister tried to remain in touch with him she stop when it was not reciprocated. She and her brother relocated to the USA, which is where they were when they found out that her father passed away. Her brother is doing quite well economically, but she isn’t and certainly could benefit from the share of her inheritance.

It is my understanding that under Dominican law she is entitled to receive a portion of whatever the old man accumulated, and I have a good lawyer that helps me out with legal matters when needed. But before I start making calls on behalf of my sister, is there a way that we can find out when there will be a reading of the will of whatever the process is called. I honestly apologize if I’m not using the correct terminology, as I have no horse in this race and I’m inquiring only to help my sister.

I will be happy to answer any questions that you may have.
 

GusFring

Active member
Apr 15, 2020
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I would contact a lawyer here immediately.

Before it is too late and before his new family transfers all of his assets and wealth into their names....if they already have not done so.
 

windeguy

Platinum
Jul 10, 2004
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She is certainly entitled to part of the inheritance if it has not already vanished.
 

obiuno

Member
Jan 2, 2002
30
1
6
She is certainly entitled to part of the inheritance if it has not already vanished.
That part I understand, but there are certain assets (like the house) that don’t banish just like that; shouldn’t the bank or other financial institution involved ask about a will before proceeding with any transaction? It’s safe to assume that any bank accounts were shared with his wife, but in terms of a house I don’t think they can just sell it and the bank goes “okay, no problem” once they find out that he passed. Since my sister doesn’t even know about his assets (where did he save his money, the paperwork for the house(s), etc), where does she even starts?
 

dulce

Silver
Jan 1, 2002
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That part I understand, but there are certain assets (like the house) that don’t banish just like that; shouldn’t the bank or other financial institution involved ask about a will before proceeding with any transaction? It’s safe to assume that any bank accounts were shared with his wife, but in terms of a house I don’t think they can just sell it and the bank goes “okay, no problem” once they find out that he passed. Since my sister doesn’t even know about his assets (where did he save his money, the paperwork for the house(s), etc), where does she even starts?
She should start with a lawyer in the DR. I suggest you have this moved to the legal section of the board.
 
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NY2STI

Active member
Mar 22, 2020
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There is a legal forum if you look on the home page. It's listed under "general". Maybe this link will work....https://dr1.com/forums/forums/legal.44/
This thread may help...https://dr1.com/forums/threads/dominican-inheritance-law.61161/
 

obiuno

Member
Jan 2, 2002
30
1
6
There is a legal forum if you look on the home page. It's listed under "general". Maybe this link will work....https://dr1.com/forums/forums/legal.44/
This thread may help...https://dr1.com/forums/threads/dominican-inheritance-law.61161/
Thanks, sorry I was looking for that precisely but I’m really a dumb navigator... :(
 

Fabio J. Guzman

DR1 Expert
Jan 1, 2002
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You should contact an attorney to represent you and ask the court for the distribution of estate assets. Wills are not common in the DR for two reasons: first, because, unlike in the US, for example, there is no way to avoid probate (except if all heirs are in agreement); second, because of the forced heirship provisions of the Dominican Civil Code: most of the assets in the estate are reserved for the children of the deceased irrespective of his wishes (if he had three or more children, 75% of the estate is RESERVED BY LAW to be divided equally between ALL his children).
 

obiuno

Member
Jan 2, 2002
30
1
6
You should contact an attorney to represent you and ask the court for the distribution of estate assets. Wills are not common in the DR for two reasons: first, because, unlike in the US, for example, there is no way to avoid probate (except if all heirs are in agreement); second, because of the forced heirship provisions of the Dominican Civil Code: most of the assets in the estate are reserved for the children of the deceased irrespective of his wishes (if he had three or more children, 75% of the estate is RESERVED BY LAW to be divided equally between ALL his children).
Thanks for your reply; the part about “no way to avoid probate” I kind of understood and I told that to my sister and her question was how to proceed to assert her rights. The answer seems to be to hire a lawyer and tell him/her “my father so and so passed away on this day” and take it from there, correct?
 
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