Seeking advice - how much to charge?

joyfulguyNovember 30, 2004

Hi all,

A couple of years ago my old step-uncle's wife died. Through many years of marriage with two wives, they had no children: my (step)-sister is his only niece and he has several cousins, with whom he was not close.

He, having had three hip replacemnents, despite heavy pain in back, hip and leg, at age 86 continued to keep beef cattle in the barn. When his wife was there, if he did not return in an hour, she investigated.

No wife, no investigation - so, not liking the possibility of his falling in a snowbank and freezing, I stayed with him for a couple of months till the cattle went on grass. I did not help care for my parents in their declining years.

When we went shopping just after my arrival, I picked up milk, as I drink a lot of it. When we arrived home amd he wondered whether I should repay him for the milk, I suggested that, many years ago when a number of neighbours helped with threshing the crops at the various farms, the farmer who was being helped fed the helpers dinner at noon and supper before they left to do evening chores at home. He did not pay me for my time there at the time, though it meant occasional travel home to look after various chores.

Uncle left me a few thousand in his will.

He died in March and I offered to help keep the place looking lived in, so have made a 25 mile round trip from my place to sleep and spend some time at his place almost every day since.

The executors are asking me to submit an account for my effort and I have little idea what amount would be relevant, so am wondering how much to ask for.

I don't want to be greedy but would like to ask for a reasonable amount.

I've heard from $15.00 - $25.00 or $30.00 per day.

Anyone have some ideas to offer?


ole joyful

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I think at least $30 a day. Prices of everything have gone up especilly gasoline and you should get compensated. 50 miles a day should even be $50 a day. I don't think that is being greedy and the executors will probably accept it. If someone was hired to do what you did they'd probably charge more. IMHO

    Bookmark   December 1, 2004 at 12:23AM
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Hi Minnie,

The total trip is 25 miles, not just one way. It's almost daily as I seldom spend the whole day there.

One local man said that a common charge in this area is 35 - 40 cents per km. (5/8 of a mile). The 25 mi. trip is 40 km., so travel alone would be about $14.00 or more.

Thanks for your information.

ole joyful

    Bookmark   December 1, 2004 at 7:56PM
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I suspect that we in the U.S. can't give you good advice because we don't know Canadian law. In the U.S., a formal agreement for payment would create a taxable situation for you which may or may not be good for you. On the other hand, since you are not a blood relative of the deceased, the executor couldn't give you something from the estate in lieu of cash without incurring an estate tax. I think if you were just paid for your expenses then a taxable situation would be avoided. In the U.S. I would use the mileage allowance the government allows for charities. Hopefully some Canadians will weigh in here.

    Bookmark   December 3, 2004 at 7:36PM
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