Legally remove fathers 4th wife from home after his death

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Legally remove fathers 4th wife from home after his death

My father left his home and property to me and
my husband. He said his 4th wife could live in
the home until she dies. Problem is that she is
a drug addict and eats Xanax until she is
puking everywhere, falling down, passing out
and injuring herself. She is in her 70s. She
could go live with her son. We just want her out
of the house before we come home and find
her overdosed dead. How can we legally
achieve this?

Asked on November 6, 2018 under Estate Planning, West Virginia

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

Speak to a real estate lawyer about her precise rights, given the way that the home left to you and her. If your father did give her a "life estate," or legal right to reside in the home so long as she lives (or until she voluntarily moves out) while you and your husband have the "remainder interest" (or right to the home after she passes or voluntarily leaves), there is nothing you can do--such a right is enforceable in her favor, and your fear of what could happen is insufficient to override her right to the life estate. However, it is worth checking how exactly the house was left to you and her after your father died; if your father did not set up or create a proper life estate, it may be possible to remove her. 


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