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Clare, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 35054
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practise since 1985 with a wide general experience.
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I have a detailed question to ask regarding about a late

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I have a detailed question to ask regarding about a late friend's Last Will and Testament and the renunciation of my role as the executor of this will but I am worried that if it is published in full on line people may identify me and the people involved.
Due you edit questions and responses to make these anonymous?
HiThank you for your questionMy name is ***** ***** I shall do my best to help youIn general terms we deal with matters on an anonymous basis - using no names
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Hi Clare,An elderly friend of mine, AB, died and I along with one other person were named as executors in his Last Will and Testament. At first I thought this was quite an honour but it soon became apparent that this role would be time consuming, emotionally draining and potentially risky for me if I made mistakes. AB died after a long illness . He and his partner, CD, entered a same sex civil partnership in 2008 and the will was written and signed a few months after this. The will leaves the house my deceased friend’s partner, CD, and made bequests to friends, including myself, and relatives. Earlier this year AB and CD converted their civil partnership to a marriage.To complicate matters the second executive wrote a letter to AB’s bank stating that he was rescinding his position as executor to allow me to act as sole executor, I am now unsure whether this was valid, but the bank have told me that they have a record of this. A second complication is that when I went to AB’s bank to give them evidence of my identity and address the bank told me that there is insufficient liquid assets to pay AB’s credit card debts and care debts - these amount to about 12-14000 pounds, but AB does have a small portfolio of shares and a house which is worth about 500,000 pounds. CD informed me that he some to a lawyer who advised him that as AB’s liquid assets are less than 5000, probate is not required and that AB’s credit cards will be written off by the bank. The bank stated that this may not be the case and that legal advice should be sought. CD is also of the opinion that as there is no liquid assets to pay the bequests the intended recipients of these will have to go without but I am unsure about this. CD added that he could understand why AB would want to leave me a financial gift and would be happy for me to receive this if the funds were available to pay for it but did not see why the other recipients should get anything as they had not seen AB for years.Although I submitted my details to AB’s bank I have not dealt with paying his funeral bill or dealt with outstanding debts, etc, as the bank would not allow me to do this as I could not provide them with a hard copy of my bank statements (I could not do this as I use online banking).Given the messy nature of this situation and the fact that I lack the time and competency to deal with this I contacted the Will and Probate Company which dealt with AB’s Will and Testament for advice as the paperwork they sent me informed me that probate is normally required if an estate is worth more than 5000 and that their legal department could offer advice or deal with probate matters. I spoke to this company’s senior Probate Specialist regarding the above situation and my wish to rescind my position as executorship. He agreed with me that the situation is messy and advised me to rescind the executorship and sent me an Executor Renunciation Form. He initially told me to submit this to the High Court of Justice alongside the Will but then after considering that there may be a fee involved added that if CD was willing to accept the role of dealing with the probate himself, I should give him the Renunciation Form and the Will and he should submit both with an application to take on the role of executor himself. I spoke to CD about this on Friday night and after he agreed to deal with the Will and AB’s estate and debts I sent him the copy of the Will and all of the paperwork (including Funeral Bill) by recorded delivery.My concerns after doing this are the following -- I am concerned that by sending these documents by post as I am worried that he may try to deal with things - or worse still not deal with things - without lodging the Will and my executor renunciation form to the Probate Registry and that my resignation as executor will not be recorded anywhere or recognised legally. As a result of this I am worried that creditors or beneficiaries may try to make a claim against me if they are not paid money owed or promised to them. If I have committed a great error in this regard, is there anything I can do to remedy the situation?- Also, CD told me today - after I confirmed that I had posted him the Will and Renunciation Certificate - that as he married AB in January 2015 the Will made after his civil partnership to AB in 2008 was no longer valid. Is this the case?Lastly, the Will and Probate Specialist I spoke to last Friday advised me that CD has to honour AB’s debts and the bequests made to named people in his will and and that if there are in
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Can you please delete the reference to January 2015 as this may identify the case that I am asking you about
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
And the reference to 2008. Sorry I meant to delete these points.
For clarity who actually owned the house they lived in?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
The person who died
Was the gift of the house a specific gift - or did it form part of the Residue going to the spouse
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I shall check
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
The will states 'I give my property, furniture and other articles of household use or ornament my partner'. This appears fairly specific gift as the partner is not mentioned elsewhere.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
The will goes on to say that after specific beneficiaries are paid the residue of the real and personal estate goes to various charities
In fact due to legislative provisions the Will was NOT revoked by the marriage; and since there is a property involved Probate will HAVE to be obtained inorder for the property to be transferred into the name of the spouseGiven that fact I am certain that his spouse will indeed obtain probate so please do not worry about thatThe Shares would have to be used to pay the funeral bill and any debts; and it is entirely possible that the Local Authority have a charge on the propertyto cover the care debt - so if there is change from the Share portfolio the gifts will have to be paid.Since you have not obtained probate you are in no way responsible to anyone - and even if you had obtained probate you are never liable for anything unless you deliberately sell an assets at less than market valueI hope that this is of assistance - please ask if you need further details
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thanks for this advice. Can you please advise what would happen regarding the the bequests to beneficiaries named in the Will, are these also treated as debts? And would the spuuse need to raise money from the house, or other means, to ensure that these are paid?
No I am afraid he would not since the lack of funds means the money gifts are void
Clare and other Property Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thanks for this advice.
You are welcome most