Follow
Share

I am curious does anyone know of a way that you can put expenses against your parents estate? I am caring for my mom and I am also having to repair her home. Her will states that the home is to be sold and any profits leftover divided between me and my 3 siblings.

The challenge is not only am I to care for my mom, but I have to pay her expenses and now fix her home. I am trying to keep repairs within reason so that I am not out loads of money in home repair, but I am wondering if I track what I spend can I claim it against the estate? Can I put a lien on the home?

Any ideas anyone? I could really use some suggestions, my siblings are very happy to stick me with the bills. I am trying to do right by my mom, but feel like I am getting the shaft by my siblings.

Any ideas?

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Well the raccoon filled the trap that I got from animal control. He was probably a good 15 pounds.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Igloo572, thanks for the information! I am a Texas resident, but my mom is an Illinois resident.

I knew that credit cards were last and most will not even file in probate court for that reason.

I just need to find the site to go to and find out Illinois information. Although I could be a long way from probate. The doctor said mom could live another 13 years.

I am so glad you are sharing your knowledge and experience, I am so very grateful for the information.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Well racoon's range is like huge. But it probably isn't him but his or her kids as they got imprinted with your house as their place. Your home is their vacation home or springtime mating & nursery site!
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

DK - well that you don't live there is even better for your position against the estate. If you lived there, then you "benefit" so some of the costs would probably be disallowed.

About probate, all this is very state law dependent. Been executrix twice in TX
(and part of 1 aunts estate had foreign will stuff for property in New Mexico she never got probated from a prior marriage - any will from out of state is considered a "foreign" will, and that was just loads of fun). You need to find out how your state does probate so you are totally comfortable in being in a courthouse. Some states - like TX - is a level of claim state. All claims go into their appropriate claim level and are paid by their # and filing position within. As executor (Sissy the older), she can pay herself a management fee to be executrix and the attorney can get paid their fees in this category too - which is usually class 1 or 2. As a claimant you can require documentation on her time and expenses paid from the estate. MERP is a Class 7 claim in TX and credit cards are Class 8 (so sh** out of luck for them). Other states are equal level of claim state, so not as clear cut as to who get's paid and these seem to divvy up by % owed. Some states allow for a lein to be placed on a home by creditors - while other states (TX & FL) have heavy-duty homestead rights where no lein (except for mortgages) can go on a homesteaded property.
So google your state's law on probate so you get an understanding of what's what.
Also if you really want to, you can go to a probate hearing. Those legal notices in the paper will have a hearing date, you can go to it. Probate is open court, I think,in all cases. It's by & large boring and routine but can have a whole dramarama hearing that is quite entertaining. My aunt's ran the full run for TX probate of 4 years. Quite enlightening but I was alot younger and had alot more patience then & I ended up doing quite a bit of the paralegal stuff for the items done in outside the homestead county. I'm not a paralegal but did stuff like get abstracts run, copies of old deeds, take photographs of land, get old obituary notices. Lots of little stuff.
Learned a lot - most families are dysfunctional (!!) and you have to have documentation (receipts, cancelled checks, before & after photographs, marriage & divorce paperwork) and if you do the judge will work his best to compensate you. Dress down & no matter what the judge is always smarter and better looking than anyone in the room. You answer to him (or her) first and foremost.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

The raccoon was cute, but he was one big fat coon! He filled the cage we trapped him in. Animal control took him away, lately we have wondered if he was back because the hole he use to get into looks like someone was trying to get in. :-)
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Igloo572, thank you so much for the clarification and information!! We technically do not live in the house, but help with it. When I am at my mom's we live in our 5th wheel in the driveway, but mom sleeps in her home.

We are going to try and avoid the whole NH thing, but no one can predict the future.

I had thought about putting a lien on mom's house and was going to check on that to see if it is possible or not.

I said something to my youngest sister about filing a claim against the estate and she told me she did not think so. She said the attorney told her how the debts had to be paid, but she said nothing about probate court. I thought when the last parent passed, probate court was a requirement. My younger sister picked this last attorney and he is an idiot in my book.

No worries, I am going to keep my records and they are going to be surprised because I won't roll over and play dead. I have told them things we needed to do over the years including to protect the house from Medicaid, but they didn't listen to me they listened to the stupid attorney so now the house is unprotected.

They are going to be very surprised because unless I miss my guess, I will be the one cleaning the house and preparing for auction. Yet I am not the executor on the will, but I will be the one doing the work. My oldest sister is a co-executor, but she is one lazy woman.

I have a long road ahead, but I will keep my records. I have receipts of work done so far and I will keep them going forward.

I truly appreciate your response, it helped me out a lot!!
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Was the raccoon just too, too cute?
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

i'd like to expand on JessieBell's comment on Medicaid. Your mom is still at home and not on Medicaid, correct? Let's hope that can continue to work for you. But if at a later date, she needs to go into a NH and apply for Medicaid to pay for it there will be issues for the home. While she is alive, the house is an exempt asset, but upon death the home will be subject to MERP (Medicaid estate recovery). MERP is very dependent upon your specific state law on death & probate. MERP has exemptions - one of which is if the heir to the home provided full-time care in the home to the Medicaid recipient that kept them from going into the NH and onto Medicaid for 1 or 2 years prior. You meet that criteria as the caregiving heir. But your lovely Sissies do not. If mom goes onto Medicaid, you can use this to claim more of your share of the home if you can go to the mat to challenge them in probate. Also if she goes onto Medicaid, the expenses on the home may be deducted from any MERP claim - BUT this only seems to work if the home is empty. If you are living in the house, the home maintenance exemptions or deductions kinda don't apply and you are expected to pay for all this as you are getting a benefit from the home.

Are your familiar with a MECHANIC'S LEIN? It is what tradesmen - roofers, carpenters, plumbers, interior designers - can place as a lien on a property for non-payment. You might be able to do this for the $ owed to you for repairs you paid for but have not been compensated for. Until the lien is release (by paying it), the property cannot be sold or transferred as there is not a clear title. Mechanics liens have to be done within a set time after the work is done; filed in courthouse and then appears and is recorded against the property. Usually cheap to do. It may be in your state that it has to be done by a tradesmen with a legal registered business.

Upon death, anyone can place a claim against the estate. When you go to probate it is required to publish a notice in the paper on this & more than 1 time. Look through your paper in the classified section and you will find stuff like this under legal notices or summons columns. It will say something along the lines of "any
debtors or heirs of Joan McBride Jackson, decreased, notice has been posted or letters entered to xyz court on such&such date...and any claims must be presented within 30/60/whatever date". If you have been keeping records and documentation on all the stuff you paid for, then you copy all this and do a cover letter with the amount owed to you and file it in probate court and against the estate. This is done all the time and the judge has to evaluate it. I've been executrix twice and found that probate judges have heard it all from greedy or envious siblings or family and seem to be very sympathetic towards the care providing sibling in awarding them $ or property. But if you don't file for compensation, you can't get anything. Your lovely Sissies are assuming that you won't do this, I'll bet. Get your records together and be ready to do this and surprise them. Good luck!
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

JessieBelle,

Thanks for the information on Medicaid, I will remember that so I can do that. I do keep good records, but that is good to know. I am hoping and planning on going the distance.

A group discussion won't work and that is why I am looking for alternatives. I pay mom's bills now and she doesn't make enough to cover the expenses. Mom is in Stage 4 Alzheimer's so not sure if that is considered sound enough to make the decisions.

I have one sister that will tell me she didn't track what she did for mom for the 12 years she drove her around. My mom doesn't and hasn't driven a car. After my dad died, mom lived alone, but asked my older sister that lived in town to drive her to the store, church and things like that. But if you listen to my older sister and her husband, they did oh so much for mom. Yet, since I came to help, I have put over $1,500 into home repairs to paint walls, clean, trap a raccoon, and much more. We have patched holes, fixed doors and the list goes on.

I am not looking for all of my expenses, just the money to keep the house in tact for sale.

So my older sister would get upset if I wanted more and she wouldn't give it. My older sister and younger sister are the executor of the will. My other sister is there and would probably get upset because it means less money for her.

I just want to get money that I am outputting for roof repairs and other repairs. My uncle helps my husband, but I pay for the materials.

I spoke to my youngest sister today about it and she said she didn't think so. She picked mom's last attorney and he refused to talk with me. In fact, he violated his ethics by his behavior. Anyway, my youngest sister told me that he told her how bills were to be paid and I know he gave poor information to her. He is a lousy small town attorney that thinks he is something, but in a big city he would get eaten up by other attorneys.

So I was hoping someone in this group has had a similar experience. So this is my lovely situation. I just don't understand why families can't get a long.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

I should have said that money paid by anyone other than your mother will be deducted...
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Have you talked to your siblings about this? If the house is to be sold and the money divided, you should be able to come to a meeting of the minds of getting it up to market. Is you mother still able to make sound decisions? She has the current control of her estate, so if she is competent, you can also work with her in getting the costs covered. From what you write, it sounds like a group decision would be best. Of course, you should keep good records in case your mother should need to apply for Medicaid in the future. Money paid for maintenance and repair will be deducted from any recovery done on the property.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.