D. B. Norton, PLLC is a concierge-style law practice serving clients and their families with discretion in their time of need. Whether helping clients plan for the future, assisting clients during their time of loss, or helping someone clear their record, the Law Office of D. B. Norton, PLLC always goes the extra mile for the people it serves.
Attorney Dillon Norton understands that legal issues are often confusing for clients. Whether you need an estate plan are in need of probate and estate settlement services or are injured, he always takes the time to explain each step involved so you can understand how the process works. He is also available to answer any questions or address any concerns you may have along the way. When anything changes in your case, you can count on Attorney Dillon Norton to bring you up-to-date immediately.
After spending nearly six years serving our country in the United States Navy, Houston Attorney Dillon Norton wanted to do more to help his county by serving individuals and their families in the greater Houston area, surrounding counties, and throughout the state of Texas. If you are in need of legal representation, Houston attorney Dillon Norton is the only attorney you should call.
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- University of Texas - Austin
- B.A. | Government
- Activities: Student Veterans Association, Phi Alpha Delta Pre-Law Fraternity
- University of Houston - Main Campus
- J.D. | Law
- Honors: Barksdale Stevens Award for Student Involvement National Finalist - South Texas College of Law Energy Law Negotiation Tournament
- Activities: Alternative Dispute Resolution Team
- Estate Planning "10 Best Attorneys" Selection for Texas
- American Institute of Legal Counsel
- The Pro Bono College of the State Bar of Texas
- State Bar of Texas
- Inducted into the Pro Bono College of the State Bar of Texas for meeting the standard of eligibility by making outstanding contributions to the delivery of legal services to low-income Texans as required for membership for the year 2017.
- State Bar of Texas # 24102286
- Q. My dad passed last week can't find will but he married his ex wife she wants to take all and just cremate him f
- A: Also, check the probate records department at your local county clerk's office to see if your father filed a will for safe keeping. Not many people do it, but it's worth looking into. Take a death certificate or obituary and a form of ID. If you're listed as an authorized person who may retrieve the will, they will give it to you. Some counties also let a named executor retrieve the will. If you are neither, then you will need a court order to get the will.
- Q. Father is incarcerated in TX. Just diagnosed with stage 4 cancer, with 2-3 months possibly. What do I have to do
- A: I'm terribly sorry to hear about your father. He can sign a power of attorney as long as he is not mentally incapacitated. If he has spells of dimentia because of his illness then executing these documents will be tough. Getting witnesses could be tough, too, but a good attorney will make it happen.
- Q. my dad passed away and didn't leave a will. My mom passed away and left a will with my sister being the beneficiary
- A: It depends on whether your father was married to your mother when he passed, and if so, whether his children were of your mother and father's marriage. You need a probate attorney to assist you. Assuming parents were married at the time of dad's death and all his children came from their marriage, then the surviving spouse would get 100% of the community property, 1/3 of separate personal property with 2/3 going to the children, and surviving spouse gets a 1/3 life estate in the separate real property which comes back to the children when the surviving spouse dies. This assumes she survived him by 120 hours. If there are any children from outside the marriage, the equation changes. Then the children get 100% of the decedent's community property share, equally. If the decedent was unmarried and had children, the children then get 100% of all the decedent's property. However, you have to go through probate to determine heirship rights and establish any of this. To establish who gets what, you will have to probate both estates.
- Q. Can a doctor inheit from his patient?
- A: Was the doctor a family member of the patient? Did the patient have any other family out there? If the patient was married in Texas and had no pre or post-marital agreement, then a large gift could give away more community property than the patient is entitled to give away. Was the doctor a witness who signed the will? What was the testator's intent behind giving the gift? Was the gift tied to a charitable purpose such as for "Doctor X's ongoing cancer research," for example? More importantly, was there any undue influence or coercion on behalf of the doctor? Was the doctor instrumental in assisting the patient with their will? The answer depends on a lot of factors. I think it's more of ethical dilemma that the doctor faces, which depends on the doctor's situation and that of the testator's estate. There are poor doctors, and there are rich doctors just like there are poor attorneys and rich ones. If the testator was extremely wealthy with no family or heirs, no community property or enough to support a substantial gift from the testator's portion without engaging in fraud on the community, and the doctor is relatively poor then maybe. If the doctor is wealthy, and a substantial testamentary bequest could be considered fraud on the community by giving away his entire portion and some of their spouse's community property, then the doctor should probably disclaim the gift. The doctor should use their judgment in light of potential ethical dilemmas. All parties should consult independent probate attorneys.
- Q. My father died 16 months ago, his will has been read and his estate distributed we just got a bill do we need to pay it?
- A: This question is difficult to answer without additional information. You need to contact a probate attorney to help figure this out. "Reading" a will and distributing an estate does not say much. And what is the bill for? Is it for a credit card he had or a care note? Was it an electric bill for a home that one of you is now living in? Was the estate probated and an inventory filed? Answering these questions is important. If you haven't filed for probate, you should. Doing so gives an executor the power to fight creditors. If anyone was a co-signor on a debt associated with the "bill," then they are on the hook for payment. Contact a probate attorney for assistance.
- Q. My step Grandfather left a will leaving my deceased Mother (his Stepdaughter) and my Developmentally challenged Sister
- A: This is a tough question. It depends on the terms of your grandfather's will and whether your mother left a valid will stating whom shall benefit from her estate and how. It may also depend on who died first or the length of time between their deaths if your mother pre-deceased your grandfather. Without viewing both of their wills, this question is nearly impossible to answer. Regarding the Texas anti-lapse statute, it is designed to prevent property being given away under a will, to a named beneficiary who predeceases the testator (will maker - grandfather) from being distributed as if the testator died without a will. Without the anti-lapse statute, a testator's estate plan can be frustrated. Here's how it works. Testators can make two type of gifts, class gifts, and gifts to specifically named individuals. Class gifts are gifts to a class of individuals, like, "I give x property to all my brothers." Thus, only the testator's brothers are in the class of people that can receive "x," and no one else. If one brother dies, then his interest in "x" goes back into the pot for the other brothers, and the deceased brother's descendants or named beneficiaries in his will receive no portion of "x." However, if the testator made a gift to specific individuals, like, "I give x property to John, Bob, and Darrell," all of whom are the testator's brothers, and John pre-deceased the testator, then John's descendent's will receive John's interest. And under the anti-lapse statute, Bob, and John's other brother, Darrell, will not receive John's interest. I hope this helps. You should hire independent probate counsel to review the wills and probate filings to help you determine what you should do. It depends on their respective wills.
- Q. My daughter will be 18 in Just days... is it required that her fathers property and house go into a trust and probate?
- A: I'm sorry for your loss. This is never easy and family members being at odds makes things worse. This is a very complicated situation, and you need to contact a probate attorney to help protect your interests and those of your daughters. Without additional facts, it is difficult to ascertain who has rights to the dad's estate. I do know one thing for certain, DO NOT GET BULLIED BY THE GRANDFATHER. First, I'm sorry to tell you, but there are no oral wills in Texas, and I'm not sure what "it was made very clear" really means. To me, "very clear," means there was there was a legal document like a will, trust, deed of trust, etc. stating that the property was transferred to her during dad's life (or someone for her benefit until she turns 18 at which time it becomes hers), or was clearly bequeathed to her in dad's will. Without any of this, init is unlikely that said property can be in her name if at all before she turns 18. Even if dad had a will, it would have to be probated before beneficiaries could assert any rights to the property. Your daughter's rights to the property should be asserted through the probate court, assuming she is a rightful heir, which depends on whether dad was married at the time of his death and whether there were any children from outside the marriage. If you were married to dad at the time of his death, and the house and land were community property, then you would be the sole heir of the estate, and you could probably disclaim your interest in the estate so it could pass to your daughters equally assuming there are no other children. If there were any kids from outside the marriage, then dad's share of community property goes to them equally. However, if you were not married to dad when he passed, his children are the sole heirs of his estate. If your daughter turns 18 real soon, then apply to probate the estate at that time, and this could shake out. Of course, this will be different if the house and land was dad's separate property. Also, check the county property records to make sure dad really owns the property. Also, there is no time limit in Texas for determining heirship. And DO NOT sign anything with the grandfather. Retain independent counsel.
- Q. What can we do about my mother’s husband wanting to take all her property after her death? He is Not a legal Citizen
- A: I'm terribly sorry to hear about your mother's loss and how complicated this is for your family. Without a bit more information it's difficult to determine what the proper outcome should be as it depends on many factors. One thing I know for sure is that you need to hire a probate attorney to help you with this issue. If she had a will, start there. If the will names him as the beneficiary of the estate 100%, then you should think about contesting the will as people are not entitled to give away more property than they own. If your mother did not have a will, then you should apply for an heirship and independent administration of her estate. In the application, you should reference the property in question and the relevant provisions in the divorce decree. If everything goes smoothly and the children are in fact the rightful owners of the property, you could have a remedy against the husband. However, you need a probate attorney to do this.
- Q. Can I become the administrator of my father's estate even tho he has been deceased for ten yrs
- A: It depends on various facts, and you should contact a probate attorney to assist you with this matter. Without more information, answering this question is difficult, so I will supply some hypothetical scenarios that may assist in answering your question. Assume your father had a will. In Texas, people have four years from the date of a decedent's death to probate a will. After that, you can only probate a will under a few scenarios: 1) to provide a link in the chain of title for real property, and 2) to collect property owing to the estate with Letters of Administration with the Will Annexed. Common examples for needing an administrator to collect property owing to the estate are: to gain access to a retirement or stock account that has no beneficiary designation or to access bank accounts that have no survivorship designations. If you are named as an executor in the will you would be eligible if collecting property owing to the estate is needed. If you are not a named executor, and the named executors have died, do not qualify or desire to serve, then you may become the Administrator if all the beneficiaries agree that you should serve. If your father did not have a will, you could apply for an heirship at anytime after his death, and you may serve as the administrator of his estate if all of the heirs agree that you should serve. However, you need to contact a probate attorney for assistance as this is a complicated matter.