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Probate advice

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Hi, I wonder if someone, anyone can offer some sound advice. Here's the back story.

A few years back when doing my family tree I found out that my mother's biological father (who was told not to contact her by my nan is not named on her birth cert - he died in 1986) left is estate to his nephew (lets call him John) who was living with him. Over the last few years I had contacted John (my mum's cousin) and he told me various stories and gave photos etc. He had no living children and didn't marry.

He passed away in December 2022. I only found this out when I went to the house to see him and found that two people were clearing the house. They told me that his 2nd cousin was the executor of the will and he was sorting it out and that all the items in the house had either been given away or scrapped. I have today found that the 2nd cousin has put an advert in the Gazette for probate. Does this mean that there wasn't a will? If there wasn't a will I know my mother would have to do a DNA test to prove she is related but she doesn't want to go through this process. I also seems to me that on my biological grandfather's death bed he was made to sign everything to John as the date of the document was the day before he died (in 1986) and my grandfather's signature was very shaky and the 2nd cousin to John was the executor.

Any help or peace of mind would be welcomed.

Comments

  • Keep_pedalling
    Keep_pedalling Posts: 17,234 Forumite
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    No, it means his executors are not familiar with his finances and are checking for unknown creditors.
  • poppystar
    poppystar Posts: 1,372 Forumite
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    Advert in the gazette can be there if there was a Will. 

    I’m not sure a DNA test would override the birth certificate. Also what would her DNA be tested against as the father is no longer here? 
  • Crumps
    Crumps Posts: 7 Forumite
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    poppystar said:
    Advert in the gazette can be there if there was a Will. 

    I’m not sure a DNA test would override the birth certificate. Also what would her DNA be tested against as the father is no longer here? 
    You can DNA a relative and they would give info as to if they have a genetic marker link. Which would then prove she was related to the family. Even if it was a 2nd cousin, 3rd cousin and so on.

  • retroman62
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    As others have said, the notice in the Gazette is really to cover the Executors from unknown liabilities. Gosh, this is an interesting one - I think you are right to be sceptical about whatever document he signed the day before he died (what was it, if it wasn't a will?)  although of course your biological grandfather may have been very infirm by then. Unfortunately if it was a will, I fear you would have no chance challenging it now, but you might have a claim upon his nephew's - do keep us posted of developments!
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