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Aston Lawyer
Aston Lawyer, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10779
Experience:  Solicitor LLB (Hons) 23 years of experience in Conveyancing and Property Law
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My husband, mother-in-law, and myself held our house as Tenants

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My husband, mother-in-law, and myself held our house as Tenants in Common in unequal shares. My mother-in-law held 38%, my husband 32% and I have 30% share of the house.
My mother-in-law died in February, and left her 38% share not to her son, but to her gradnchildren. However, she allowed her son, my husband, to stay in the house, by naming him the Life Tenant. What would happen on my husband's death? Would I have to sell up, and pay out the grandchildren their 38% inheritance, or is it possible for my husband to set up a Deed vi his will to allow me to stay in the property until I die?
Many thanks,
Hello and thanks for using Just Answer.

My name is ***** ***** am happy to assist you with your enquiry.

Could you please clarify what you mean when you say your mother-in-law has made your husband "a Life Tenant"? Did she put a provision in her Will leaving her share to the grandchildren but stated that they should not be entitled to their share until your husband dies/wishes to sell? If so, I take it that the Will doesn't say that the property should not be sold until you also die/wish to sell?

I look forward to hearing from you.

Kind Regards
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

The wording on my mother-in-law's Will state: " I declare that, until the sale of the property or the earlier death of the Life Tenant the Trustees shall allow the Life Tenant to reside in the property." Unfortunately, the will does not mention me, at all.

Hi again,

Thanks for your reply.

I am afraid, therefore, that if you do survive your Husband, the grandchildren could demand that the house be sold in order for them to obtain their inheritance.
As their inheritance is coming from their Grandmother's Will, unfortunately your Husband can't sign a Deed or put a clause in his Will preventing this from happening as the 38% share has nothing to do with him.

Of course, there wouldn't be anything stopping you from paying off the grandchildren, were your Husband to die first- I don't know if he has sufficient monies in investments/accounts to enable this to happen.

I am sorry this is not the answer you were looking for, but it sets out the legal position.

Kind Regards
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you for you reply, AL.

I should have perhaps mentioned that my husband is one of the Trustees, alongside his three children (the ultimate beneficiaries of the 38%), therefore I wonder if he has any power, as a Trustee, to alter the conditions of the Will, and delay any payout until after my death?


As Trustee, your Husband is under a duty to mae sure his Mother's Will is dealt with as it should be, and therefore has no power to amend what it says or what should happen on his death.

I am sorry.

Kind Regards
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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you for your expert reply, however disappointing the answer to my question was.