When someone died, it is always a sad thing. It's even sadder when there are assets involved. Wolves come out all over the place for a share of the deceased assets.
That's what happening to a friend of mine now. I'm not a lawyer or anything, so maybe someone who has went through this or someone with some legal knowledge can help me out here. Here's the situation:
When his grandfather died, the HDB flat the grandfather owned was spilt between his children. One of my friend's uncle holds 50% of the house, while the rest is between the remaining uncles and aunties. The uncle who hold 50% of the house went overseas and the house various bills is paid by one of the other uncles. As it was a new house, the family cannot sell it immediately and has to wait a couple of years before they can put it on the resale market.
Under Singapore law, there's nothing unusual so far.
Then comes the problem! When the time came to sell the house, the uncle who owned 50% of the house refused to sell. In fact, he refused to even come back to Singapore to settle the matter with his siblings. The idea seems to be that as he holds 50% of the house; no one can sell the house without his signature as he never signed a Power of Attorney. Yet at the same time, the other uncles need to continue to maintain the house and pay the bills as they also has a share of the house. If there are any unpaid bills, the Singapore government isn't going to chase him all the way overseas right? They will chase his siblings who are still in Singapore. As long as he refuse to sell, he will own the house without paying a cent for the flat's upkeep.
Now my friend's uncles and aunties in Singapore are struck in a no-win position. They have to continue to pay the bills to a house which they do not live in and which will never be sold. If they do not, they will be breaking the law. But if they do, they will continue to be taken advantage off.
Anyone out there has any idea what can be done by the family now to sell the house? Or at least not to pay the bills to a house they do not owned? If you do, please leave a comment.