Married but can I leave half of our house to my children?

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Deaths, Funerals & Probate
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HareneHarene Forumite
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edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Deaths, Funerals & Probate
I have been married for 25 years however the house has always been in my husbands name. Mortgage is paid off and deeds solely in his name, this has been a bone of contention that has made the marriage very rocky. I can prove that I pay half of all the bills. My question is that should I die can I bequeth half of our house to my children even though my name is not on the deeds.
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  • McKneffMcKneff Forumite
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    You can only bequearh what you own, so the answer is no.

    The other way is divorce him and then get your share, thene you can bequeath.

    Does he have a will
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  • Yorkshireman99Yorkshireman99 Forumite
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    Harene wrote: »
    I have been married for 25 years however the house has always been in my husbands name. Mortgage is paid off and deeds solely in his name, this has been a bone of contention that has made the marriage very rocky. I can prove that I pay half of all the bills. My question is that should I die can I bequeth half of our house to my children even though my name is not on the deeds.
    Since the house is not in your name you cannot bequeath it. You need to try and persuade your husband to puthe house in joint names. I realise this is not going to be easy.
  • Savvy_SueSavvy_Sue Forumite
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    And what does HIS will say?
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  • Keep_pedallingKeep_pedalling Forumite
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    Unfortunately you seem to be married to a control freak who is denying you long term security as he could leave the house to someone other than you.

    If he is adamant that the house is his and his alone, then I would consider the nuclear option and threaten divorce. That would certainly split the house 50/50 along with all assets including pensions.
  • Manxman_in_exileManxman_in_exile Forumite
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    Unfortunately you seem to be married to a control freak who is denying you long term security as he could leave the house to someone other than you.

    If he is adamant that the house is his and his alone, then I would consider the nuclear option and threaten divorce. That would certainly split the house 50/50 along with all assets including pensions.


    I may be completely out of order here (apologies if I am) but I wonder if there may be cultural or ethnicity issues here that may make divorce even more nuclear? Just wondering...
  • Sea_ShellSea_Shell Forumite
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    You refer to "my children" rather than "our". Are they not his, maybe this is why he's reluctant.
    "It's time to start digging up those Squirrelled Nuts"!!!

    * I shall only get involved in new threads, once a dialogue has been established with the OP *
  • Margot123Margot123 Forumite
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    Did your husband own the house before you met him?

    Quite frankly, after 25 years, it seems your only option would be divorce (or at least the threat of it).
  • AmaraAmara Forumite
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    Is it not a case that after so long marriage house is considered as joint asset and in case your husband's death you will inherit it? I din't know about house to children though.
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  • Savvy_SueSavvy_Sue Forumite
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    Amara wrote: »
    Is it not a case that after so long marriage house is considered as joint asset and in case your husband's death you will inherit it? I din't know about house to children though.
    If the OP's husband dies without making a will, then indeed the house may well pass automatically to her.

    However it's not quite as simple as that, it used to be, but not any more.

    IF he has surviving children, grandchildren or great grandchildren

    AND the estate is valued at more than £250,000

    THEN the OP will inherit:
    • all the personal property and belongings of the person who has died, and
    • the first £250,000 of the estate, and
    • half of the remaining estate.

    The half she doesn't get is divided equally between his children, if any of them have died it could pass to his grandchildren or great grandchildren.

    See here.

    Now, it's quite easy for a house to be worth more than £250,000, so already it's complicated. If the children are just hers, then they don't inherit, but if he has other children then they DO inherit.

    Regardless of whose children they are, if they're under 18, then their 'half' has to be preserved in trust. If any of them are over 18 and want to force the sale of the house, they probably can.

    But what's worse is that if the OP's husband has made a will in which he has left the house to the cat's home, or to anyone other than his wife, then she COULD be forced out of her home.

    That's why I asked what his will said ...

    OP, I'd never lightly recommend divorce, but you say that this issue has caused the marriage to be rocky. It won't surprise me if you say that he would never consider going to marriage guidance counselling, but did you know that you can go to Relate on your own if he won't come with you? That might help you explore your options with a neutral listener, and might make him realise what he stands to lose.
    Still knitting!
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    Current projects: pink balaclava (for myself), seaman's hat, about to start another cardigan!
  • paddy's_mumpaddy's_mum Forumite
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    Surely she would be entitled to make a claim under the Provision for Dependents part of the law should he die leaving a widow completely unprovided for whilst leaving matrimonial assets to someone not his spouse?
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