Practical, real-world information about wills, estate planning, business succession planning and elder law in Canada
Great talk show Lynn. Thanks for all you do.
Good Morning,I have received a letter from the public trustee in BC. My mother who died while in care , as a result of debilitating alcoholism, has a small sum of money remaining. There was no will. The trustee has asked that the adult children sign a form allowing the ministry to release this sum of money to her remaining children, who are all adults, provided we sign and accept responsibility for any debts possibly incurred by our mother. This woman led a life of serious alcoholism and was out of touch with her children, the potential for debt is entirely unknown. How long would the responsibility for debt be in force? Could we be sued by a third party alleging damages as a result of her misconduct? Would there be taxes owing? Would probate have been completed by the trustee? When an estate is distributed, doesn't this mean there can be no further claims? If we do not sign off on potential debt, what happens to the money? Would we get a tax receipt for the donation to the ministry if we do not take the money? Please help.