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LegalGems
LegalGems, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 7402
Experience:  Experienced Family Law Attorney
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My mother passed away and there was no will put in place that

Customer Question

My mother passed away and there was no will put in place that specified how her assets would be handled other than my brother and I get everything. She has a house that at first had no value, but a year later due to the market, now has value. I have been living in the house and now that it has value, my brother is claiming that because I have been in the house rent free this is illegal. Is that illegal?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  LegalGems replied 1 year ago.
Good Day! I'll do my best to assist you. Please remember: I only provide general information and a local attorney should always be consulted.
The executor of the will is responsible for preserving the assets, and ensuring that they are put to the best use. So if a heir lives rent free in the house, unless there is an agreement to the contrary or a specification in the will, the other heir-owner is entitled to 1/2 the fair rental value of the property during the period the other heir-owner is occupying it.
If the house had no value then the fair rental value would likely be minimal.
Also, if the heirs are co-executors of the will, and the executor did not object to the living arrangement, the court will often consider that the party "acquiesced" - essentially gave permission by inaction.
It is not illegal to remain in a home rent free. The executor would typically make a formal request for the party to vacate or pay a certain amount of rent; if they refused, the executor would be responsible for evicting the individual.
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Expert:  LegalGems replied 1 year ago.
Here is a link to help locate an attorney:
www.findlegalhelp.org and http://apps.americanbar.org/legalservices/findlegalhelp/home.cfm
Of course, should you have other questions please do not hesitate to post here.
If you found the information I provided useful, kindly rate positive as that is the only way the site is allowed to credit me so that I am compensated for the time I spent- which does not result in additional charges to the customer.
Thank you for extending this courtesy as I am an individual contributor so ratings are quite important , and take care!
Expert:  LegalGems replied 1 year ago.
Here is a link to help locate an attorney:
www.findlegalhelp.org and http://apps.americanbar.org/legalservices/findlegalhelp/home.cfm
Of course, should you have other questions please do not hesitate to post here.
If you found the information I provided useful, kindly rate positive as that is the only way the site is allowed to credit me so that I am compensated for the time I spent- which does not result in additional charges to the customer.
Thank you for extending this courtesy as I am an individual contributor so ratings are quite important , and take care!