Wednesday 13 December 2017

Am I, as will executor, liable for property tax?

Sinead Ryan

Sinead Ryan

I am the executor of a will for an elderly lady who was not a relative. There is a family dispute over a property which has held up the distribution of the estate for over a year and may not be resolved soon.

I am concerned that the property tax will come due in July and I'm not clear on who is liable to pay it.

One of the consequences of the introduction of the Local Property Tax (LPT) is that it will throw up all kinds of 'ownership' issues on houses.

Not everyone owns a house they live in and Revenue will have a job on its hands dealing with some of these.

In the case of a property of a deceased person, the executor or administrator of the estate is legally deemed the personal representative of the deceased owner and, therefore, the liable person as far as the tax is concerned.

However, you may not be the one to receive the notice of assessment of the tax, so you may have to check the property to ensure it is delivered there.

As executor you have an obligation to gather and protect the deceased's assets, distribute them within a year (unless there are outstanding legal issues) and preserve the assets (i.e. keep the property insured and maintained).

However, you also have the power to sell assets to pay debts to which there is a legal obligation outstanding.

The property tax could be construed as such a debt.

I have been a tenant in an apartment I'm very happy in since 2009.

I got a notice of eviction from my landlord last week which has stunned me.

I've always paid on time and never caused trouble. He claims he wants to let his daughter live there now she is in college.

Can he turf me out like this?

According to www.keepingyourhome.ie, run by Citizens Information and MABS, a landlord can terminate a lease only in the following circumstances and only with appropriate notice:

• After 3.5 years,

• If the tenant does not comply with the obligations of the tenancy, e.g. paying rent.

• If the property is no longer suited to the tenants' needs (e.g. overcrowded).

• If the landlord needs the property for him/herself or for an immediate family member.

• If the landlord intends to sell or refurbish the property.

• If the landlord plans to change the use of the property (e.g. turn it into offices).

As long as the notice period is appropriate and he's not accusing you of non-payment, then he is within his rights. However, it is worth pointing out that if he does not follow through on his intention to have his daughter move in, he can be reported to the Private Residential Tenancies Board (PRTB).

The length of notice depends on the length of the tenancy, so check your contract.

It must be in writing, signed and specify the date of termination and the reason.

Contact Threshold or the PRTB for further details.

Irish Independent

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