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Contesting a will that's going through probate

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Apologies, I don't have much information due to difficult circumstances 

My step-grandfather died just under a year ago. He had been married to my grandma for 27 years. 

He did have a will that he wrote at the beginning of the marriage which stated that when he died he wanted all of his estate to go to his children. My grandma foolishly agreed to this as she had recently sold her house to move in with him and had around £50,000. At the time in the early 90s she thought this would be enough to take care of all of her needs should my grandad pass away. This money has predictably been eaten in to over the years and she now has barely anything of her own. 

The will only states in relation to my grandma that she must be able to live in the house until she passes away, but leaves no financial provisions for her or any alternative should she be unable to live in the house anymore due to care needs etc. There was a small sum of money kept in the house that my grandad had always said was for her but one of the children has removed it saying it's not in the will she can have it so therefore it belongs to them. 

His daughter has moved in to the house and has handled everything since he passed away. She is pleasant and helps around the house but my grandma is just told the will is in probate and doesn't get given any other information so she can't really explain to us what is going on. Whenever we go round there the daughter is at work or out so we are unable to speak to her. The other children don't make any effort or speak to our side of the family now my grandad has gone. It has taken this long to tackle due to my grandma telling us not to rock the boat and my parents being scared to make any challenge as they are scared my grandma will be made to live an uncomfortable unhappy life living with the daughter if it creates arguments due to contesting it. 
I've felt very uncomfortable about it since the beginning but thought I'd leave it down to my parents to handle but I need to try and help as it just seems so unfair. 

Would my grandma be entitled to challenge the will based on the fact she was married to my grandad for 27 years, lived in the house for even longer and has been left nothing financially other than a small security that she can live there until she passes away? 
I have done a bit of research and seen we can use a form PA8A to place a hold on the probate for 6 months, would we still be able to do this or is it too late? 
Is anyone able to advise if it's worth it or totally not possible? Due to the fact we don't want to make my grandma's life miserable if there's absolutely no chance she could get anything out of it?

Thanks in advance 


Replies

  • theoreticatheoretica Forumite
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    Scotland, England, Wales or NI?
    But a banker, engaged at enormous expense,
    Had the whole of their cash in his care.
    Lewis Carroll
  • xylophonexylophone Forumite
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    https://www.mplaw.co.uk/our-services/services-for-individuals/contested-wills-financial-provision/what-does-reasonable-financial-provision-mean

    https://www.gov.uk/stop-probate-application
    Did her husband have a pension? If so, there may well be a widow's pension.
    Has her state pension position been sorted out?
  • BrynsamBrynsam Forumite
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  • getmore4lessgetmore4less Forumite
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    The will only states in relation to my grandma that she must be able to live in the house until she passes away,

    If the Grandma has a interest in possession the house effectively i belongs to her under the terms of the will/trust,

    She can kick the daughter out if she wants,  none of his children have any right to occupy.
  • xylophonexylophone Forumite
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    If the Grandma has a interest in possession the house effectively i belongs to her under the terms of the will/trust,

    From the information given, this sounds more like a Right of Occupation?

    https://wards.uk.com/online-services/legal-guides/life-interests-rights-occupation/#

    The will only states in relation to my grandma that she must be able to live in the house until she passes away, but leaves no financial provisions for her or any alternative should she be unable to live in the house anymore due to care needs etc. 

    In which case, if she needed care, the property could not be taken into account?

  • TBagpussTBagpuss Forumite
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    She may well be able to make an inheritance act claim. She needs to talk to a solicitor who deals with contentious probate ASAP. 

    All posts are my personal opinion, not formal advice Always get proper, professional advice (particularly about anything legal!)
  • RASRAS Forumite
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    in England and Wales the deadline to make representation is generally 6 months, after probate is granted. So you need to act fast.
    The person who has not made a mistake, has made nothing
  • MalthusianMalthusian Forumite
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    He did have a will that he wrote at the beginning of the marriage which stated that when he died he wanted all of his estate to go to his children. My grandma foolishly agreed to this as she had recently sold her house to move in with him and had around £50,000.

    Your grandmother is not a fool - her consent wasn't required.

    The will only states in relation to my grandma that she must be able to live in the house until she passes away, but leaves no financial provisions for her or any alternative should she be unable to live in the house anymore due to care needs etc.

    At that point the local authority would have to provide for her needs, although that may be small consolation if she ends up in Overmydeadbody Grove.

    Is her income - State Pension etc - sufficient for her lifestyle? I have no idea how likely a court is to vary a Will to provide funds which could be used to pay for care needs that may never arise. If she has a roof over her head but can't heat it or eat in it, that would be a clearer case.

    Who pays to maintain the property according to the Will?

    The will only states in relation to my grandma that she must be able to live in the house until she passes away, but leaves no financial provisions for her or any alternative should she be unable to live in the house anymore due to care needs etc. There was a small sum of money kept in the house that my grandad had always said was for her but one of the children has removed it saying it's not in the will she can have it so therefore it belongs to them. 

    If it was your grandad's money, the child in question is an executor and they are telling the truth, they have acted correctly. They were legally obliged to do that.

    If the cash was a joint asset they did not. However "for her" implies it was grandad's (as opposed to "hers" or "theirs") and he wasn't telling the truth when he said it was for her, if it wasn't in his Will.





  • edited 28 July at 4:49PM
    gwynlasgwynlas Forumite
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    edited 28 July at 4:49PM
    You need to speak to a solicitor as your grandmother was presumably financially dependent on your grandfather and her assets ie. the £50k was spent for the benefit of both of them. His children cannot just occupy the houuse without her agreement. Was his will made before or after theit actual marriage? It is all very well your parents not wanting to rock the boat re his childrens inheritance but living with a cuckoo could have an adverse effect on your grans mental and physical health. She should be free to sell up and downsize if necessary though his children would retain rights. No one need know legal opinion being sought until necessary.
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