Plainfield, IL asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law and Probate for Illinois

Q: Any rights and what to do?

Living in home with owner since 2014. Verbal agreement to be her caretaker and pay utilities and upkeep of home. All utilities in her name but paid out of my bank account. Notarized letter of residency w/ mine and her signature for schools for my children to attend each year. She passed away unexpectedly and her home is in a trust being donated to a charity. I have not seen will. Executor is asking for rent. Any rights and what to do?

1 Lawyer Answer
Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Crossville, TN

A: According to your own recitation of the facts, the verbal agreement was premised, at least in part, on you being her caretaker. Now that she is deceased, the verbal agreement to stay and serve as her caretaker is ended. You have the option of either vacating or negotiation a rental agreement with the trust. It sounds like the trustee of the trust has made the first move and is offering to let you stay, at least for a while, in exchange for rent. This probably will last only for as long as the trust is in the administrative phase. Once the house is deeded to the charity, you will have a new landlord with whom to negotiate. If the charity is willing to continue to rent the house out, you might be able to get a new lease with the charity. If the charity would rather sell, most likely you will need to vacate, unless the charity happens to sell the house to an investor who is willing to let you stay and pay rent.

The bottom line is most likely you will need to move sometime soon.

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