Cars in intestacy

My client’s long term partner (not a spouse or civil partner) has died suddenly and intestate. They have two sons, one of whom is over 18, but the other is not.

Fortunately most of the estate was held jointly by the couple, but there are several cars, all in the deceased’s name, some of which have been unofficially earmarked for family members, some of which are intended to be sold.

In practice, none of the cars is particularly valuable, but my client is keen to deal with them correctly. Ideally she would like to register them into her name for the time being with the DVLA, and then gift/sell them as appropriate. However, as far as I can see, she currently has no legal standing to do that. Would a power of attorney be required and/or a grant of representation? Presumably there is no problem with selling cars and accounting to both sons for the proceeds, but there is a difficulty with the younger son consenting to gifts…?

Ben Leach
JBHS Solicitors