Smart Money: Division of her estate is mom's decision to make
DEAR BRUCE >> I am presently the executor of my mother's will. She wants to leave her estate, which consists of the family home and very little money, to only three of my siblings, who have done very little for themselves.
Mom is 87, and it seems she now thinks that once she is gone, the three, two of whom now live with her, will be thrown to the street with nowhere to go. I promised my mother that I would give them time to look for housing before selling the house after she passes.
I know for a fact that the hardworking siblings would not agree with her new idea of leaving the estate to the three moochers. Is there anything I can do as executor to ensure that she does not leave the rest of us (the four hardworking ones) out of the will?
DEAR READER >> We had to shorten your rather lengthy letter, but substantially, your mother seems to feel that she still has a responsibility for the three siblings who have done very little and mooched all their lives. While that doesn't seem fair to the others, it is your mother who has to make that decision. If that's what she wishes to do, then so be it.
You can propose that you would give your siblings time to look for housing before selling the house, and if your mother wants to go for that, so much the better. But it's all up to her to decide how she wants the house and cash to be distributed.
DEAR BRUCE >> I have a huge coin collection and have discovered in my collection a coin worth millions. Can you recommend somewhere I can show my pieces to sell and find out their true values?
DEAR G.A. >> I would recommend Stack's Bowers on West 57th Street in New York City. If you have a coin that is as valuable as you say, they are certainly qualified to handle the transaction. Many years ago when I inherited a portion of a coin collection, I used this company; they were very accommodating and did a fantastic job for me.
DEAR BRUCE >> In a recent column, you stated that there are companies willing to negotiate student debt. Many people would be interested in how to locate such an entity. I just started making money this year, and I'm 65.
DEAR M.S. >> You mentioned that you're 65 and you are just starting to make money! What have you been doing, and how long have you had these student loans? If you consult the Internet, you'll find several companies that are willing to negotiate student debt and get paid only in the event that they succeed in reducing it.
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