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The house is willed to the two daughters. A verbal agreement was made between our Mom & our Uncle in that he can live there rent free, expense free, use her car, use her credit cards for gas and groceries and in return he would take her to the doctors appts., the dog to the vet, make her coffee and make her dinner but not 24/7 care.....but there is nothing in writing. How to handle? Can he go back on the estate for caregiving salary? How do we get him out of the house if our Mom did not specify time, length of stay? Could he turn into a poacher and then what happens?

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1)an agreement doesn’t have to be in writing in order to be valid, legal and enforceable. Yes your uncle can go after the state for compensation and no one here can say for sure that he won’t be successful.

2)probate may not be required or necessary depending on how your mother’s estate is set up.
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Reply to worriedinCali
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Most states have a probate process requiring a year or so to clear so there's no need to push your uncle out immediately unless there are other considerations in play. Please see an attorney and review the will and state law to see what limitations may apply. Mom's verbal agreement most likely died with Mom. I suggest (if resources allow) to continue paying the home's utilities for a generous period (90 or 180 days) to give your uncle time to make new living arrangements. Have the attorney send your uncle a letter telling him he needs to leave the house by then. You might even want to work with your uncle and APS to find a senior apartment for him, perhaps offering to pay a couple of months rent and the security deposit. I might even give him Mom's car if it would help him walk away.

Mom's agreement seems to indicate that Mom needed some help and maybe the security of having someone in the house with her. Although her agreement died with her, it is probably appropriate to honor the spirit of the agreement by trying to engineer a soft landing for your uncle. Often it is cheaper and less stressful to negotiate the soft landing than going through a formal eviction or claim against the estate in probate court. My aunt, who had no care giving agreement written or verbal and lived rent free in my grandmother's rental house, was able to press a care giving claim against my grandmother's estate the probate court approved. You can always use the legal system to force your uncle out, why not try offering a couple of carrots first?
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Reply to TNtechie
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What's sad about this entire thread, from the OP to most of the replies, is that instead of treating your uncle like the loved family member he is that took care of your mom for years, he's being considered like he was a squatter that walked off the street and refuses to leave. I think he deserves far more consideration than that.

If that house was left to me and that was my uncle who took care of my mom, the only thing I would tell him is that he can live there as long as he wants.
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Reply to needtowashhair
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He can not come back for additional pay, they had a verbal agreement that was fulfilled by both parties during her lifetime.

Verbal agreements are legal, but once one of the consenting parties die, so does the contract.

Talk to an attorney to ensure that you are compliant with state laws to decide what happens from this point forward. He was a legal tenant and you want to make sure that you don't endanger yourselves by breaking the law.
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Reply to Isthisrealyreal
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If Mom has passed, you need to start probate. The Executor will receive a short certificate that allows the Executor to freeze credit cards and put accts under the estate with only Executor able to sign. You will probably need a lawyer for Probate. Made my life easier. I just did what he told me to do 1,2,3. Believe me, it will make things go alot easier. The Will would need to say that Uncle would be allowed to continue to live in the home until his death and then it reverts back to the daughters. Also, that he is responsible for the upkeep. The daughters should not feel that this is their responsibility. I would think any verbal agreement made between Uncle and Mom died with her death.

No, don't think he can sue the estate for caregiving wages with no formal agreement. He received his "wages" in free room and board. He would have to supply written proof of any kind of agreement.

He may have to be evicted. But the daughters are now the new owners and can ask for rent and utilities to be paid. (Taxes are now the daughters responsibility as owners) Maybe daughters can set rent so high that Uncle will move out on his own. If not, he can be evicted for nonpayment of rent. Like I said, any agreement he had with Mom died with her. But you need a lawyer. I would think the same attorney can handle probate and eviction.
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Reply to JoAnn29
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It's unclear to me whether or not your mother is still alive, or has passed.   If the latter, it's easier legally, especially if she has a Will and the Personal Rep, Executor or Executrix is charged with selling the house as an asset.   If Uncle is refusing to move, he's interfering with the obligation to carry out the terms of the Will.   

I'm assuming he's been living there for some time, so he may fall under state statutory protection and qualify as a "tenant", meaning he'll have to be formally evicted if he doesn't leave voluntarily.

There's another effective way.   Who pays for the utilities?   If it's the Estate, I would get an Elder Law attorney involved to send him a "notice to quit" (polite terms for "get out!") which would begin an eviction process.   He should also be notified that the Estate after a set date (1, or 2 months, depending on state terms for allowing someone to vacate) will not continue to pay for water, heat or electricity.   

An attorney can tell you about any applicable laws, especially if the house is in  a cold weather state and refusing to pay continued bills might create a health and safety problem.

If he refuses to go, my general understanding (from laws in my state) is that the Sheriff's Office will send officers to physically remove him and his belongings, which may just be piled up in front of the house.   At that point, he becomes homeless, so it's to his benefit to find alternate housing somewhere else.    And that's something you could consider if you want to be generous. 

Occasionally I did some landlord-tenant work for attorneys who handled such cases, and I always felt uncomfortable about having any involvement with dumping someone on the curb.   The creditors had legitimate claims and legal authority, but the concept was just so harsh.   It's humiliating, unsettling, and can be dangerous, but it's also a method of removal if someone refuses to go voluntarily.

As already suggested, terminate any accounts, especially credit cards.   But who's paying these bills now, especially if your mother is no longer living?    This also should be a task for the Executrix/tor/PR, as it needs to be done by someone with legal authority.   Caveat though is if they both shared the card jointly, and he has the same rights as your mother did.   

Yes, he can become a poacher, or squatter, and that's when you need an attorney (even a landlord-tenant attorney could handle this, but an elder law attorney could offer better insight into the Estate dynamics.  

It seems your mother provided for him during her lifetime, and provided for the two sisters thereafter.    Now it's time for him to be satisfied by her generosity and relinquish the house to the legal heirs. 
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Reply to GardenArtist
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My opinion is that he can sue the estate or put claims into probate for these things, but if there is nothing in writing, the court is not going to give him anything. Contact an estate attorney to find out what to do legally to protect the assetts. Obviously turn off the Credit Cards yesterday.
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Reply to surprise
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I agree with answer above. An elder care lawyer will help you through this.
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Reply to EssieMarie
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Contact an estate attorney immediately. Cancel her credit and debit cards immediately. Make sure that you secure her checks, identification and valuables. You will most likely have to evict your uncle if you do not want to provide free housing for him.

A good attorney will know the best way to proceed. Money well spent rather than creating a mess on your own. Good luck.
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Reply to Mincemeat
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