What ends a life estate?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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What ends a life estate?

My mother willed her mobile home and land to my sister and I but gave her husband a life estate. My mother died and the mobile home burned to the ground. Did his life estate go up in smoke? Can he put another mobile home there and should we let him? He is going to collect life insurance and home insurance totaling about $250,000, so should he be required to replace the mobile home? if he does

nothing he can’t live there because there is no home, so in that case does the property become my

mine and my sister’s outright?

Asked on April 8, 2018 under Estate Planning, North Carolina


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Oh my goodness I am so orry.  So there are some additional answers that need to be had here.  The very definition of a life estate means it is measured by the lide of the person to whom it is given.  But how and why did it burn down?  Was it due to the fault of your step father?  Because the holder of a life estate has an obligation to keep the property in a good state for the remaindermen - you and your sister.  And you and your sister may have an action against him for part of those insurance proceeds.  Go get help.  Good luck.

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