Mum, 82, is embroiled in bitter court battle with her own daughter, 52, seeking to kick pensioner out of her three-bed flat nearly 20 years after she signed it for ‘inheritance tax reasons’
- Norma Gibbons, 82, signed house to daughter for ‘inheritance tax’ reasons
- But she and Dawn Gibbons, 52, got into a fight as a younger woman tries to evict her
- She claims Ms Gibbons senior ‘ignored’ court orders to allow home repairs
A pensioner, 82, who handed over her home to her daughter ‘for inheritance tax reasons’ is now fighting her eviction in court following a bitter family feud.
Norma Gibbons and daughter Dawn Gibbons, 52, have been rowing for six years after falling out over allegations the elderly woman had raised her voice against her young granddaughter.
The mother and daughter live in upstairs and downstairs apartments in the same £1.4 million converted house in south London, and previously co-owned Mrs Gibbons senior’s upstairs apartment.
But in 2004, she put it on her daughter’s only name for “inheritance tax reasons,” a judge heard.
Now, after the argument, she’s being kicked out of her three-bed house.
Norma Gibbons outside Central London County Court after the hearing with daughter Dawn
Dawn Gibbons outside Central London County Court after the hearing into the argument with her mother Norma over Norma’s flat.
Norma, who has lived in the Earlsfield flat for over 40 years, is challenging the claim, arguing that she wouldn’t have signed the flat if she thought her daughter would kick her out.
Dawn, who works in finance, represented herself in Central London County Court and said she was close to her mother before they fell out after she became a parent herself in 2008.
She said she cut ties with Norma for “yelling” at her young daughter and the argument had turned into a full-blown breakup and a series of lawsuits.
She had complained about booming noises coming from the flat above and filed a lawsuit to try and force her mother to let construction workers in to fix a leak she says is damaging the electricity in her £800,000 downstairs apartment.
And she claims her mother has repeatedly refused to allow people into the £600,000 flat upstairs to investigate problems, ignoring court orders requiring her to allow access for repairs.
The upstairs and downstairs flats in Earlsfield, in the middle of the court battle between Norma Gibbons (white door – upstairs) and Dawn Gibbons (red door – downstairs)
“I gave her some orders which she tore up and threw in the yard,” she told Judge Richard Roberts.
“I need my contractor to investigate what damage there is and what repairs need to be made.
“Water is coming through my ceiling. I have mildew. The damage is irreparable, I need access upstairs.
“I’m seeking property because the defendant has continued to disobey court orders.”
“I’ve been trying since 2017 – from friends to family, police, through the courts, through environmental services.
The electricity in my house is out. My daughter and I are in danger.
“I pleaded the defendant. What else can I do?’
But for Norma, lawyer Lara Simak said it is the mother’s business that the leak has already been repaired and she has not refused entry.
And she said she would claim the right to stay in the flat on the basis that she wouldn’t have signed it otherwise.
“When she put the property in her daughter’s name, she expected to live there for the rest of her life,” she told the judge.
“Certainly, she didn’t expect to be evicted from her flat by her daughter, or she wouldn’t have turned it over.”
Judge Roberts issued directions for a lawsuit against Dawn’s attempt to kick her mother out later this spring.
He said that in the meantime, Norma should allow her daughter access to investigate what repairs might be necessary.
‘How is this going? The ceiling will fall,’ he remarked.