Person died leaving Council Tax debts

A person died leaving several thousand pounds of debt to Council tax.

The person who inherited the estate is now being asked to pay this money.  

There is enough money in the estate to pay it as it includes a house.

Is the inheritor liable for this debt?

Comments

  • la531983
    la531983 Posts: 1,672
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    Should have been settled from the estate before it was distributed, but someone will be along shortly to flesh this out a bit more.
  • MattMattMattUK
    MattMattMattUK Posts: 8,249
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    As above, if the funds were distributed without settling the debts then technically the executor becomes liable.
    Was probate obtained?
    Was the inheritor also the executor?
    Why was the debt not paid from the estate before the assets were distributed? 
  • Gavin83
    Gavin83 Posts: 8,727
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    Is the inheritor liable for this debt?
    Technically no, although the estate is so it will reduce the amount that is inherited. If the estate has already been distributed then the council could chase the inheritor for the debt. They could also potentially chase the executor, who could personally be liable for the debt, although in reality this would likely only happen if they couldn't get the money another way.
  • user1977
    user1977 Posts: 13,332
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    How was this debt missed? It seems a fairly obvious thing to sort out the council tax if a house is in the estate.
  • Keep_pedalling
    Keep_pedalling Posts: 16,201
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    If the person who inherited the estate was also the executor then yes they need to pay the debt. If someone else administer the estate it is a little more complicated, the LA will in the first pursue the executor but if they get no where they will chase the beneficiary.

    The best thing they can do is pay the debt and move on.
  • BungalowBel
    BungalowBel Posts: 192
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    edited 8 January at 10:25AM
    The estate has not been distributed.  There is no will so no executor. The inheritor and a relative are sorting it out.

    The debt amounts to thousands of pounds.

    I suppose that the inheritor will have to pay it once the house is sold.

    Thank you all for your advice.
  • Keep_pedalling
    Keep_pedalling Posts: 16,201
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    The estate has not been distributed.  There is no will so no executor. The inheritor and a relative are sorting it out.

    The debt amounts to thousands of pounds.

    I suppose that the inheritor will have to pay it once the house is sold.

    Thank you all for your advice.
    If they are jointly acting as administrators then yes they will have to pay it from the proceeds before distributing the estate. If just one of them is applying for letters of administration then it is that person’s responsibility to pay any creditors.

    They need to let the LA know that they are dealing with the estate and that the debt will be payed from th3 proceeds of the sale of the property. They should also request an exemption from CT from the date of death (assuming the house is currently unoccupied)
  • Marcon
    Marcon Posts: 9,996
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    The estate has not been distributed.  There is no will so no executor. The inheritor and a relative are sorting it out.

    The debt amounts to thousands of pounds.

    I suppose that the inheritor will have to pay it once the house is sold.

    Thank you all for your advice.
    Correct. Debts have to be paid before the estate can be distributed - and with a property to sell, letters of administration will be required. Hopefully your reference to 'sorting it out' means an application has been, or will be, made?
    Googling on your question might have been both quicker and easier, if you're only after simple facts rather than opinions!  
  • BungalowBel
    BungalowBel Posts: 192
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    Marcon said:
    The estate has not been distributed.  There is no will so no executor. The inheritor and a relative are sorting it out.

    The debt amounts to thousands of pounds.

    I suppose that the inheritor will have to pay it once the house is sold.

    Thank you all for your advice.
    Correct. Debts have to be paid before the estate can be distributed - and with a property to sell, letters of administration will be required. Hopefully your reference to 'sorting it out' means an application has been, or will be, made?
    Yes it does.

    Thanks for all your comments.
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