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JGM, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 12072
Experience:  30 years as a practising solicitor.
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My ex husband owes me money daughters wedding which I said

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My ex husband owes me money for our daughters wedding which I said he could pay me out of his estate when he dies - he owns his own house. Finanancially he is not well off and I am happy to lend him some over the next few years, but how do I safeguard my money? A charge on the house will probably be too expensive and I may need to top him up as and when he needs it but if he needed to go into a home etc I want my money safeguarded against him spending it on care?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The wedding was nearly £20k and as he is on benefits and disabled he will probably need a bit more help than he is getting. So is there a legal way that I can add a letter from him and attach it to his will each time I lend him some money? If that is witnessed by someone attached with a bank statement showing me transferring him money? As I can see this situation being ongoing I don't really want to go down the route of each time putting a charge on his house.

You can get him to leave you the money in his will or claim on his estate as a creditor and/or you can get a personal bond/contract/IOU signed but my advice is that a charge on his house for "all sums due and to become due" is the best way of dealing with this. It can be done for a few hundred pounds and will rank you as a secured creditor rather than an ordinary creditor. So much as you are averse to the concept, my advice is that that is the safest way to proceed. Any other way carries risk if he has other creditors, changes his will, runs out of money or even remortgages to another lender.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I agree the safest way, if I didn't trust him, is to put a charge on the house but I do and he has left me money in his will to safeguard what I have already spent but if it is left like that when he dies inheritance tax would have to be paid if he just leaves it to me. Hence I need to know how to make legal - an iou - does he just need to write a letter and sign it each time I lend him some money.
You say it's just a few hundred to put a charge on his house but if that is done a few times it soon mounts up.
I am executor for his will and any money left will be going to our children so I just want to make sure it is all done above board and I don't want any problems with the inland revenue re inheritance tax.
So to clarify if he writes a letter confirming how much money he owes me and signs it and attaches it to his will the inland revenue will accept it. Do I need to prove via bank statements the transfer of money or his signed letter is enough?
Many thanks

If you are executor and have proof of monies paid to him that is sufficient to enable you to put the monies paid down as a debt in the estate inventory. However I still rcommend a charge. It only has to be done once as it will be for all sums due and to become due. You don't have to repeat the charge for every payment you make to him. The first charge, if drafted correctly, will cover all future payments.

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Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Ok I didn't realise you could keep adding to the same charge. I will think about it.
Many thanks