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JGM, Solicitor
Category: Scots Law
Satisfied Customers: 12195
Experience:  30 years as a practising solicitor.
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I purchased my parents house from council in 2007, the house

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Hi, I purchased my parents house from council in 2007, the house is still in there name. They are both now in hospital and have been declared incompetent by the doctors and the social staff in the hospital. They are being assessed today for a tempury care home placement. The social have told me that the house will be taken and sold to cover the cost of there care. I went to the advice shop with the original purchase documents issued from the council, the member of staff told me and showed me on the documents that the council have no claim to the house or the given discount after 2010.
So is there anything that the social can do to force the sale of this house? Or is there anyway for them to remove the equity from the property?

From a property law point of view the council has no claim on the house because the three year discount period has long expired. So if the house was sold the council couldn't claim back any part of the discount that you parents were given when they bought the house. However that is a completely different issue from the cost of care home fees and the equity in the house could be used for that if neither of your parents has other means to pay their contributions towards care home costs. When you paid for the house you should have been advised to take a security over the house or at least enter into a contract with your parents to reflect that you have paid for the house and that you were to be entitled to a share of it. Alternatively, the title should have been transferred to you once the three year discount period had expired. If none of these steps were taken, the local authority can ask for the sale of the house to contribute to care costs. It may be that if it is explained to them that you lent the money for the purchase that they will exercise discretion and reduce the amount that they would be seeking. Please read the Scottish Goverment document REVISED GUIDANCE ON CHARGING FOR RESIDENTIAL ACCOMMODATION which you can search for an find online and this will give you chapter and verse on the rules and practices relevant to your question. I hope that helps. Please leave a positive rating so that I am credited for my time.

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