Owner dies after Interim EDMO made

We made an interim EDMO on a property in November 2014, the RPT directed us to suspend our action for 3 months to give the elderly owner chance to remove the items he wanted from the property (he was a hoarder, lived elsewhere but had filled this property from from floor to ceiling).

The owner died over Christmas, leaving no will. The Coroners Office identified a surviving relative who would be the beneficiary but he does not want anything to do with the estate or the probabte process. 2 friends of the deceased have volunteered to apply for the grant of representation so they can deal with the estate, but the surviving relative does not agree to it, so there is a stalemate. Initially we were hopeful that probate would go through and the property would be sold, however, this is now unlikely

I would welcome any advice about whether the EDMO can proceed and a Final EDMO made. Has anyone else had a similar experience?

Also, what to do with the large amount of hoarded material inside the house? I was originally going to make use of the provisions of Section 41 of the Local Government Miscellaneous Provisions Act 1982, however now the owner has died this is obviously difficult! Storing the hoard would be extremely expensive as apart from the 8 rooms worth of belongings, it would include items such as 2 old rusty classic cars which are in the garden under tarpaulins.


Barbara Horth


Morning Barbara

I think I am correct in saying that if the authority is a creditor (if the owner owed you any money) then, as a creditor, the authority can apply for probate and end the stalemate.  I am not aware of any minimum amount that must be owed so the bill need not be large.

If the owner does not already owe you money, it sounds as if there is some work to be done which would result in a charge and the council becoming a creditor.

I hope this is helpful

Regards Hilary Hardwicke, Exeter City Council

Hi Barbara,

There may be another who can apply for the Lettrs of Administartion. This will have to be a blood relative as the friends can not apply. I doubt the coroner will be aware of all the family members.

We can have a look and if possible establish contact with the next of kin. If there is no other kin tha the issue of the surviving rleative may be able to asist.

It can be a daunting responsibilty for a family member to take on and they may just need assistance - again we can explain this and hopefully help to move the matter on.

Failing this or a creditors application it would be best to refer to Bona Vacantia.

Hope this helps.