Q MY father has power of attorney for his brother.
My uncle wishes to be buried in a particular cemetery in Ireland, but my dad has been told that his position as attorney ceases on death and he would not be able to make the funeral arrangements.
However, he is also my uncle's executor, so does this mean he can arrange he funeral under that position?
A He can probably do either. Assuming the power of attorney document is sufficiently specific and gives him the authority to make this expenditure on behalf of his brother, he can proceed with the arrangements and costs now. If not, or if there is any doubt as to the interpretation of the document, as executor he will have full authority to arrange the funeral according to his brother's wishes.
Q A friend of mine's son recently died. He worked in England for over 20 years but hadn't worked for the past three years.
He has no next of kin other than his mother. It has recently come to light that there is a pension fund with his former employer.
My question is: What happens to a pension fund in these circumstances?
An ex-partner has laid claim to the cash, although they parted more than six-years-ago.
And will his estate have to abide by English law?
A I can only answer that one partially. If he was domiciled in England, i.e. considered himself permanently resident and settled there, then English law would probably apply.
If he was just there with the intention to return to Scotland and considered himself really Scottish, then Scots law may apply.
However, pension entitlement usually sits outside the main legal estate and the application of the funds due on death do not necessarily follow the rules of ordinary estate succession.
The trustees or administrators of the pension may have a nomination form – i.e. a direction by the deceased as to how he wished the funds to be distributed, or if not, then they can use their discretion, normally to favour a spouse or blood relations.
But take detailed local advice on this, its complex.
Q I have been laid off at work. The manager has said the bank has closed him down, however I have not received any wages, redundancy pay, holiday pay or anything.
I now find out he has not paid any national insurance or paid any tax for over two years.
A If he is in sequestration or liquidation you as an employee have a prior claim over other creditors on whatever assets are left for your wages.
The Government also runs a scheme to pay workers unpaid wages and redundancy where the employer has no money.
Check the site: www.direct.gov.uk/en/employment/redundancyandleavingyourjob/index.htm
Your father has full authority to arrange the funeral as your uncle wished