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    • flower11
    • By flower11 13th Jan 18, 4:46 PM
    • 107Posts
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    flower11
    Will and inheritence
    • #1
    • 13th Jan 18, 4:46 PM
    Will and inheritence 13th Jan 18 at 4:46 PM
    Hope someone can put a light on a situation that myself and siblings have found ourselves in.

    In the middle of last week, my sister received a letter from a woman with no more than an email address to reply to telling her that her father had died in early 2016 and she thought that there were a few personal possessions of possible sentimental value that might go to her.

    Stunned, of course. Our father than deliberately created a new life for himself when we were in our teens, had remarried, changed is name and gathered us all together to let us know he no longer wanted to be our father! Nice guy eh.

    Fast forward 40 years. We never lost site of him. One or other of us would make an appearance every few years, either in person, by phone or birthday/xmas card. Not an easy person to find at times, but we would always find him somewhere. His wife died and he had a series of relationships but no more marriages and no more children.

    Last contact in person was late Summer 2014. He was sat alone in a house that was up for sale with no furniture as the lady he had been living with had taken it all with her when she left!

    My sister responded to the lady via the email address she gave, asking for information and also wondering why it had taken nearly 2 years to contact his family.

    We have heard nothing.

    First thing we did was check the whether a death had been registered in his new name as he could have just been trying to disappear again. But sadly no. He had passed.

    She applied for a copy of the death certificate and probate papers.

    The probate arrived this afternoon with his will. The will was made a few weeks before his death. It left over £350K to a variety of people including 50% going to the lady who had contacted my sister.

    There is no mention of his actual family in any form in the papers.

    Is this worth an investigate? If so, where would be start. I thought probably the solicitor named as drawing up the will. There are two executors, both of whom receive sums.

    Any thoughts at this time would be greatly appreciated. Thanks
Page 1
    • macman
    • By macman 13th Jan 18, 5:13 PM
    • 41,519 Posts
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    macman
    • #2
    • 13th Jan 18, 5:13 PM
    • #2
    • 13th Jan 18, 5:13 PM
    It's assumed that your parents subsequently divorced, so there would have been a financial settlement at the time (unless he remarried without divorcing, in which case his second marriage was bigamous and invalid).
    He had no responsibility to maintain his children once they become adults.
    I'm not clear exactly what you are trying to achieve here? Do you suspect that there are other undeclared assets, or that his will was made when he was not of sound mind?
    If the latter, then challenging it would be extremely difficult, as you were not in contact with him.
    There is no issue with the executors receiving legacies.
    No free lunch, and no free laptop
    • lincroft1710
    • By lincroft1710 13th Jan 18, 5:18 PM
    • 10,176 Posts
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    lincroft1710
    • #3
    • 13th Jan 18, 5:18 PM
    • #3
    • 13th Jan 18, 5:18 PM
    There is no legal obligation in England and Wales for non dependant family members to inherit anything from their deceased relative's estate. Your father didn't want to you in his life and therefore it is to be expected his will would reflect this.
    • paddy's mum
    • By paddy's mum 13th Jan 18, 5:19 PM
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    paddy's mum
    • #4
    • 13th Jan 18, 5:19 PM
    • #4
    • 13th Jan 18, 5:19 PM
    Sorry, but "investigate" what?

    You already know that he truly is dead as you have had sight of the death certificate. You already know that his will has been checked and found to be valid as you have a copy of the Probate paperwork.

    He already told you years ago that he wanted nothing to do with you and although it may be sad for you to hear that all over again, clearly those were his exact wishes, upon which he acted.

    I'm not sure what you need to consult a solicitor for ...
    • elsien
    • By elsien 13th Jan 18, 5:21 PM
    • 15,626 Posts
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    elsien
    • #5
    • 13th Jan 18, 5:21 PM
    • #5
    • 13th Jan 18, 5:21 PM
    If your father made it clear he didn't want you in his life and spent years demonstrating that, would you want any items of possibly sentimental value anyway? It can't have much meaning for any of you after all this time.
    All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.

    Pedant alert - it's could have, not could of.
    • Gers
    • By Gers 13th Jan 18, 5:58 PM
    • 6,026 Posts
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    Gers
    • #6
    • 13th Jan 18, 5:58 PM
    • #6
    • 13th Jan 18, 5:58 PM
    There is no legal obligation in England and Wales for non dependant family members to inherit anything from their deceased relative's estate. Your father didn't want to you in his life and therefore it is to be expected his will would reflect this.
    Originally posted by lincroft1710
    Unless your father was in Scotland then this is corrrect. If he was resident in Scotland the situation is different.

    It may be that the person who wrote to your sibling is offering a personal item as a rememberance and not part of any will. If you and your sister want such items then it may pay you to be co-operative with her as it appears she's acting out of compassion.
    • flower11
    • By flower11 13th Jan 18, 6:01 PM
    • 107 Posts
    • 42 Thanks
    flower11
    • #7
    • 13th Jan 18, 6:01 PM
    • #7
    • 13th Jan 18, 6:01 PM
    Thanks. Just didn't want to think that he had been taken advantage of in his last days. Money is irrelevant. It's just finding out the last piece of the puzzle. Maybe someone's conscience was beginning to niggle.
    • macman
    • By macman 13th Jan 18, 6:33 PM
    • 41,519 Posts
    • 17,097 Thanks
    macman
    • #8
    • 13th Jan 18, 6:33 PM
    • #8
    • 13th Jan 18, 6:33 PM
    The solicitor is not going to be able to give you any info about the circumstances under which the will was drawn up, due to client confidentiality. So contacting them is futile.
    No free lunch, and no free laptop
    • Margot123
    • By Margot123 13th Jan 18, 7:14 PM
    • 508 Posts
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    Margot123
    • #9
    • 13th Jan 18, 7:14 PM
    • #9
    • 13th Jan 18, 7:14 PM
    Why did you bother your Father when he clearly told you he didn't want anything to do with you anymore?
    It must have been so annoying to keep having visits from people he had thought he'd disowned.

    "....taken nearly 2 years to contact his family......" - you aren't his family.
    Last edited by Margot123; 13-01-2018 at 7:17 PM.
    • -taff
    • By -taff 13th Jan 18, 7:24 PM
    • 7,314 Posts
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    -taff
    Maybe someone's conscience was beginning to niggle.
    Originally posted by flower11
    Can't see why. Maybe they thought as you kept in contact you might like something. That's not a conscience niggle, theyhad nothing to feel bad about, unless it was the way your father treated you.

    People often take longer than a day to respond to e-mails, so give it a couple of weeks.

    There is nothing to investigate, he was of sound mind presumably, so he left his money where he wanted it to go.
    • RADDERS
    • By RADDERS 13th Jan 18, 7:27 PM
    • 165 Posts
    • 159 Thanks
    RADDERS
    Why did you bother your Father when he clearly told you he didn't want anything to do with you anymore?
    It must have been so annoying to keep having visits from people he had thought he'd disowned.

    "....taken nearly 2 years to contact his family......" - you aren't his family.
    Originally posted by Margot123

    How cruel, he was still their father !!!!!!
    • DUTR
    • By DUTR 13th Jan 18, 7:40 PM
    • 11,110 Posts
    • 6,351 Thanks
    DUTR
    How cruel, he was still their father !!!!!!
    Originally posted by RADDERS
    He is when there is a chance of some money.
    • Margot123
    • By Margot123 13th Jan 18, 7:46 PM
    • 508 Posts
    • 509 Thanks
    Margot123
    How cruel, he was still their father !!!!!!
    Originally posted by RADDERS
    No, he made it clear many years ago he no longer wanted to be BUT the 'family' still pestered him.
    Have to agree with you though, it is cruel to keep bothering someone when they have started what they thought was a new life.
    • -taff
    • By -taff 13th Jan 18, 7:46 PM
    • 7,314 Posts
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    -taff
    How cruel, he was still their father !!!!!!
    Originally posted by RADDERS
    And he obviously didn't want to be...so...
    • flower11
    • By flower11 13th Jan 18, 9:27 PM
    • 107 Posts
    • 42 Thanks
    flower11
    Some people are just not meant to be parents in the long run. We are lucky in that we have had the guidance of a great mother and later an outstanding step dad but we always cared what had happened to him. Mental illness and breakdowns come in all shapes and sizes.

    We lost him for in the last 18 months, not easy to track as he said he was headed off to a see lady in Portugal.
    • -taff
    • By -taff 13th Jan 18, 9:52 PM
    • 7,314 Posts
    • 5,368 Thanks
    -taff
    Did he have a mental illness then? Sufficient to challenge a will? Did you have Power of Attorney? Did anyone?
    • Lorian
    • By Lorian 13th Jan 18, 9:56 PM
    • 4,193 Posts
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    Lorian
    The cause of death on the death certificate might give some insight.
    • flower11
    • By flower11 13th Jan 18, 10:00 PM
    • 107 Posts
    • 42 Thanks
    flower11
    Not sure, this is what we need to find out. Having worked within the mental health field for some years, he was what is known these days as "functioning".

    The probate papers came through quite quick, we are awaiting receipt of the actual death certificate.

    The amount shown in probate was quite a shock as he was never one for material possessions.
    Last edited by flower11; 13-01-2018 at 10:03 PM.
    • Mojisola
    • By Mojisola 13th Jan 18, 10:02 PM
    • 28,767 Posts
    • 73,420 Thanks
    Mojisola
    In the middle of last week, my sister received a letter from a woman with no more than an email address to reply to telling her that her father had died in early 2016

    Stunned, of course. Our father than deliberately created a new life for himself when we were in our teens, had remarried, changed is name and gathered us all together to let us know he no longer wanted to be our father!

    Fast forward 40 years.
    Originally posted by flower11
    Did he have a mental illness then? Sufficient to challenge a will?
    Originally posted by -taff
    There are no grounds to challenge the will.

    Children don't have any automatic right to inherit under English law.

    Children who were told over 40 years that their father didn't want anything to do with them are wasting their time pursuing this.
    • flower11
    • By flower11 13th Jan 18, 10:15 PM
    • 107 Posts
    • 42 Thanks
    flower11
    A man who received instructions from an invisible "guide".

    It is not about the money.

    Something is just not quite right and he had children, who regardless of whether he was following "instructions" or not, always cared enough to keep track of him.
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