Who is responsible for the bills?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Who is responsible for the bills?

My aunt died 8 months ago and I and everyone else
agreed that I would take the house. So 2 months ago
my aunt told me that I could move in. So I did and I
tryed switching all the bills such as electric and heat
into my name but she would not let me. The house
was released to me Jan 25. I want to collect also the
money that was left for me and the executor charged
my the bills for the last 3 months and she also made
me pay the taxes that came out Jan 1st for the
house. From my understanding because the house
was still in her name I thought she would be
responsible for the taxes. I also at the time naver
entered into a agreement that I would pay the bills
while I was there. So can she charge me for the past
bills for the last 3 months and and taxes that came
out of nothing was in my name yet?

Asked on January 29, 2019 under Estate Planning, Connecticut


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Yes, you can be charged a "use and occupancy" fee for the value of the use and possession you make of the home--similar to rent--and/or your can be charged for the actual resouces you use or costs you cause (like utility bills). There is no right to live in another's property rent free or without paying for the services, etc. you use, and so long as the house was part of the estate, it was the estate's property, not yours--and the estate can collect, as stated, use and occupancy and/or seek reimbursement of costs you caused. Where, as here, you are being chared the actual pro rata costs of the home, that is an appropriate and fair amount for your possession of the home.

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