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JGM
JGM, Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 11153
Experience:  30 years as a practising solicitor. Partner in own firm.
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My father has dementia and requires full time care. His wife

Resolved Question:

My father has dementia and requires full time care. His wife has power of attorney and I, his eldest son, is executor of his will.
He owns two properties, his home and a second, rented out house. He has a pension that covers the cost of care up to £1000 per week, however, his wife is looking to sell the second house to help fund the care of a £1200 per week care home.
I was told by my father, before his illness, that he had bequeathed the second home to his three offspring. Is it possible for me, as the executor, to read the will at this stage before any lasting decisions are made.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  JGM replied 3 years ago.
Thank you for your question.

Your duty as executor only starts when your father dies whereas an attorney's job is to administer the affairs of the living person for the benefit of that person. Part of those powers will be to realise property to pay for the cost of care. If this is not necessary because there is a pension to pay for the cost of care, and assuming the wife has sufficient funds to support herself, then the wife as attorney could be said to be exceeding what is reasonably necessary to deal with the situation.

She will undoubtedly realise that if she sells the house before her husband dies she may defeat your legacy. For that reason you should see a solicitor immediately and discuss to what extent you can prevent the attorney from doing what she intends to do although my initial reaction is that you may have a difficulty here if the existing pension was supporting both of them. In those circumstances, the wife can still expect to be supported and may be able to argue for the sale of the second home on that basis.

Happy to discuss further.

I hope this helps. Please leave a positive response so that I am credited for my time.
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