From our “Ask a Question” mailbag: Before she died, my mother-in-law lived in Delaware County, Pennsylvania and I drove from the Jersey Shore every weekend to take care of her. Now that she has died, her estate is being divided up between her children and they refuse to compensate me for all the miles I traveled taking care of their mother. Can I make a claim to be paid?
Your mother-in-law’s estate is to be divided up between the heirs as her will dictates, or through the rules of intestacy if she had no will. Prior to the division of the assets, all her creditors will be paid. If you had no agreement showing that you were to be reimbursed, it will be difficult to prove that you are a creditor.
Family members often travel to take care of other ill family members without reimbursement. So, the burden would be on you to prove that this travel was done under an agreement with her where you would be reimbursed. That being said, the heirs can always agree to give you some of the estate as compensation for your travel, but if they would agree to that, I imagine you would not have needed to write this question.
If you have questions about Probate in Delaware County, feel free to contact our office for a free consultation.