Thank you @math - advice received gratefully
Under the court order the mother was not granted any right to continue living there.
However we of course will allow her to stay as long as she lives.
FYI - The reason for this strange situation (i.e. family home going to children) is that the father throughout marriage was unsupportive, abusive and made no contribution to the family expenses. However at the end of the marriage, said he would take attempt to take half of the family home (bought by the mother) OR offered not to claim anything if the house was transferred fully to the children (mainly to spite the mother). So we went for the latter option.
Regarding advice received:
- our small town solicitor advised not to worry about it, as post the divorce, we could gift a certain proportion of the house back to the mother to deal with IHT issues
- some other advice included renting out part of the house to get to deal with gift with benefit situation
- an accountant advised modelling what percentage to gift back to the mother to minimise IHT burden
Clearly none of them grasped the fact that the family home was not gifted to children, but transferred as part of a court order.
I do realise I should have pushed harder at the time to get better advice. Having said that, I am pleased with the situation we are in. I am aware that if we sell the house in the future we will pay CGT, but that is the issue with most assets owned.