Can a person sell a future interest to a property to me?

Im talking to a person whose daughter is the owner of a property. The daughter/owner is mentally incapacitated and cannot do anything. He mother doesn’t have any paperwork to allow her to sign on thr daughter’s behalf.

House is in tax foreclosure. The daughter is going to die soon and her mom is the only heir. If I don’t cure the default taxes, then it will go to auction.

Knowing that the mom will inherit the property after the daughter passes away, can I somehow buy the mom’s future interest in the estate/property? That way i could pay the taxes in arrears and stop the foreclosure and wait until the daughter’s passing then help the mom start probate and complete the transfer into my name later on.

The mom needs money now and doesn’t want to risk the property going to foreclosure and get nothing…

Thank you

This is tricky. Legally, the home belongs to the daughter. The mother can only sell to you something they own. Or a conditional sale.

I can think of a possible structure. Just not sure what can legally be drawn up. If the mother never inherits the property, you could be out the money.

Have you spoke to your lawyer to see what they could set up?

“This is tricky. Legally, the home belongs to the daughter.”

I agree. Depending upon the exact circumstances and the laws of your state, the daughter may or may not have the ability to enter into a contract where she would sell the house to you or anyone else. But again, she may.

It probably depends most critically upon whether the mother has been declared a legal conservator for the daughter. If she is a conservator, then the daughter can sign nothing. And it also depends upon whether there are other heirs who might contest whatever you come up with. It also depends upon how disabled the daughter is. If the mother has NOT been legally established as conservator, then who knows the daughter is disabled? Does the daughter have an actual will or is she (and everyone else involved) depending upon intestate succession?

I am not a lawyer, but my brother is and I have worked closely with him on several estates, including our parents, for which I was the administrator (A term used when the estate is in the form of a trust)

Let me work sort of backwards. The situation you want to avoid with the greatest revulsion imaginable is that where a decedent (dead person) dies intestate (without a will) or, with an improperly drawn trust.
The only way it gets worse is if the the decedent is non compos mentis. (hint) You have not stated the nature of the daughters disability. Mental? Physical? Both?

The ideal situation you want that will guarantee the most predictable outcome is one in which the assets of the decedent are held in a properly drawn trust. This is better than a simple will, because most small estates bypass formal probate BUT WILLS ARE MADE PUBLIC; which means that should the mother owe some creditors money, they could attach or lien certain assets in the brief period of time between when the daughter dies and the home passes into the mothers ownership. If the house is the biggest part of the daughters estate and the mom owes somebody $50K, the house could be liened or otherwise attached while mom owns it. And that claim would predate and thus trump yours, even if you came up with some sort of cooperative plan with the mom, even if you paid the late taxes. You probably have not talked to the mother as to whether she has any debts outstanding and she may not disclose nor remember them.

My reco would be to find a skilled estate lawyer. You may have to 1: pay the atty to create a trust for the purpose of guiding the chain of ownership of the house, 2: pay the tax arrearage, and 3: pay mom some kind of option consideration. By bringing up those ideas, I do not intend to short circuit what a real estate atty (AND ABSOLUTELY NOT JUST A “GENERAL” atty, a REAL, SPECIFIC estate attorney) might say/do.

On second read, I see you noted the daughter was mentally incapacitated. If that’s the case, there may well be nothing you can do in terms of helping her create a will or trust, whether or not the mom has conservatorship over her. This may mean that you have to cure the tax arrears “on the come” without gaining any specific right to buy from the mom. Again, only a skilled estate attorney can work this out if there is any workout available.