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My mom passed away 9 months ago. Her will states upon her death to sell, property and divide equally between 5 siblings. The one sibling who name is on the deed refuse to speak with us and won't pay past due water bills.

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wish she'd just done a life estate like my fil did
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Get a legal consult, but frankly if mom and sib were on the deed they are co-owners. So you may be chasing a fifth of the half mom owned. Then deduct legal fees. Mom cannot bequeath an asset she does not own. Fair? Unfair? Worth loosing a sibling over?
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There's another possibility: your mother quit claimed to herself and the one sibling, possibly to have that sibling inherit the house AND then sell it for the benefit of the remaining siblings, as I believe the will states if I understand the situation correctly.

It might be that she planned this so the house wouldn't have to be included in any probate. And on that subject, is there a probate action in process? Has any disposition been made of other assets? Who's handling the financial aspect of your mother's estate?

There are some missing facts: Who is Personal Representative (formerly known as Executor or Executrix) under the Will? Does the Will require sale of all property, and does it specifically identify the house?

If so, and if the co-owner of the house isn't cooperating as that's what I read in your post, then you definitely do need legal counsel. I can think of some actions, but it depends on who is named as PR in the Will.
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It is possible that the home was outside the rest of the Trust and Will. She probably wanted your sister to have the home and the rest of the kids to share in a percentage of the balance of property including personal property. I cannot stress enough...Get an elder attorney and always go over all legal documents BEFORE the patient dies, or looses their ability to sign any legal documents. I had an experience with my mother. She had named me Trustee and at the last minute, my brother met with her and SUDDENLY, he was trustee. It ended up very sad. My mother had wanted me to have so many fine jewerly pieces, which I never saw again,
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If there is only one name on the deed, that person owns it. Your mother may have gifted the property to her before she died, the reason why that sibling does not want to, or have to, talk to you.
The Will that states property to be sold may refer to personal property, furniture etc.
Yes of course, have the Will read by a lawyer and consider the dating and witnessing and your Mothers condition at that time
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Boy, I would see an attorney and soon. I agree with not putting money in front of family, but if you were the caregiver and the house is in another person's name, that is tough. The taxes MUST be paid. You might want to talk to the other siblings about sharing the water bill and get it paid now. See an attorney. I don't do anything about this legal stuff without doing a lot of research, listening to people on here and seeing my attorney to take action. I could have made a ton of mistakes had I not visited this site.
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I imagine your mother's intention was to allow the sibling who was living with her to remain in the house for as long as he or she wanted to; so that the rest of you could not force this person from the home until he or she is ready to go. If the will leaves her estate equally to the five of you, the four of you who don't live there will each have inherited an interest in the property, which you will realise when it is sold.

You say that the will also states that your mother's property is to be sold: you need to find out whether specific reference was made to the house, so that you can work out whether it is included in this instruction or not. I agree that this is best explained by a lawyer, preferably your mother's lawyer, so that any outstanding questions can be cleared up. Sit easy: you may have to wait a while but you'll get your money.

If the resident sibling was a joint tenant or a tenant-in-common, then he or she will probably now have sole liability for utilities bills and taxes falling due after your mother's passing; but you refer to past water bills. Are these bills that the resident sibling believes ought to be paid partly or wholly by your late mother's estate? Who used to take responsibility for paying them? - were they shared, or did your mother foot the whole lot?

Of more immediate concern is the sibling's refusing to speak to you. Why is that, do you suppose?
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What is in the will is carved in stone. Only problem is the deed being in her name. If she won't talk to you, have a lawyer do it. The city will take the house if taxes aren't paid, sell it, take what is owed them and divide the rest between family. At least I think that is the way it works.
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Have a lawyer go over the will it may not be able to be sold till the deeded owner dies and then it will be divided but its his repair bills if he doesn't he may brake the will and you can go to court to have it sold your pushing will not help in your family dynamics good luck but don't put money ahead of family as I feel money was not your mothers legace to you it was love
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Absolutely right - it could be that you find the sibling on the deed is entitled to half the value of the property PLUS 1/5 of the remainder. It is likely then that they would be responsible for the water bills although it could be argued that the estate is responsible for bills prior to death but the sibling may only have to pay 60% of the water bill post death. Whoever is executing the will should be dealing with this though...it will make it less emotional for you. When in doubt seek professional legal advice as if I understand it correctly your laws vary by state. This site will help you:
usa-probate/general_probate_information.php
as you can consult by state good luck - this is a terrible time not only are you contending with grief but with interfamilial strife.
Was the person on the deed a full time sole caregiver I wonder because that could be the root cause of all the problems
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Your best bet is to contact an Elder Law attorney to see if what is written in the Will regarding the house overrides how the Deed was written, or if the Deed overrides how the Will was written.

It came become complex if both your Mother's name and the sibling's name were on the Deed together, and depending on how it was written, example "joint tenants in common" or other legal language.
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