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Ask Deborah Awyzio Your Own Question
Deborah Awyzio
Deborah Awyzio, Solicitor
Category: Australia Law
Satisfied Customers: 863
Experience:  Bachelor of Laws (QUT), BIT (QUT), Family Law Accredited Specialist, over 12 years experience
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A friend, who has mental health problems has always believed

Customer Question

A friend, David who has mental health problems has always believed that his mother, Linda wanted him to have the family home, where he has lived all his life. She is in a supported living facility because she has dementia. He doesn't have a copy of the will and neither does she. Some years ago, she made her sister executor, but when she found it too difficult, she passed it on to the State trustees. They have never been clear with David about his legal standing, sometimes treating him as a tenant, but then expecting him to to pay for maintenance. They have never charged him market value rent, in fact for years he was paying about $120 a month, though he was always clear about being happy to pay more. Now they are claiming that they have run out of money for his mother's care and want to come and value the property with a view to selling it. Linda is in a very run down facility, where I know for a fact that most other residents pay 90% of their pension and that's all. However, every year, she foes on several weeks holiday to Queensland, and pays for other people to accompany her. Last year this cost $16,000 for one trip alone.
David has tried everywhere to find legal representation, and has been unsuccessful. He has also continued to try to remain in employment as a bus driver, though he never seems to stay in a job for long.
If he loses the family home, I believe it will be very difficult for him to find accommodation, as his main problem is a condition called Disposaphobia- in other words, he is a hoarder. Many people have tried to help him with this, but it greatly upsets him.....
I believe that the State Trustees are guilty of gross mismanagement of Linda's estate, and that David needs a voice in all of this. Thank, Roz
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Australia Law
Expert:  Leon replied 1 year ago.

Good Afternoon

My name is ***** ***** I am a NSW Solicitor. Thank you for your question, and will do my best to assist you with your question. Please understand this is not legal advise Please understand this is not legal advise but a guide to assist you.

Until she passes away they will not give him the will or tell him what the contents are.

He cannot do anything until his mother passes and then he can contest the will on the basis of need if she has not given him the house as she promised.

If she is under a guardianship order then David would have to fight them and get it changed but he has to show he is capable of looking after her financial affairs and also her general day to day needs.

I hope this makes sense?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
What about the mismanagement of her affairs?
Expert:  Leon replied 1 year ago.

If they are in the hands of the Trustee He has to show they are wasting them.

Do they have a guardianship order?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Over him and possibly his mother-, yes I believe so. How is someone like David supposed to go through the process you describe without someone to represent him? He's not the sharpest tool in the shed, if you know what I mean. I am doing this on his behalf because he doesn't know where to start, or how to speak. He is on a Disability Support Pension, so he can't afford to retain a lawyer. I am on a Carer's pension myself, so I can't help him financially either. What worries me is that he could end up homeless because of this....
Expert:  Leon replied 1 year ago.

Good Afternoon

If he has a mental illness he will not get it. Is there anyone else that can be trusted to look after both of them?

It is all done through VCAT they deal with guardianship issues.

But he hs to find someone that his trustworthy and will look after both of them.