what are my rights?

(8 Posts)
Whatwillbexo Mon 04-Jan-16 15:06:36

Hello! (Had a quick name change)
Sorry if I'm posting in the wrong bit I just needed a little guidance really. Ok Well basically my father sadly passed away very suddenly (pulmonary embolism) in November 2014- although it still feels like yesterday. He had 4 children, myself, my two biological siblings along with a 7 year old half sister he had with another woman. My dad was very close with all 4 of his children including the youngest who would visit every weekend as him and her mother had also split by the end. Well trying to cut a long story short.. Since my dad passed I've been obviously very keen to keep the contact with my 7 year old sister, we were always very close however me and her mother have never seen eye to eye, this was not a problem while my dad was alive because I was able to arrange contact with her through him. Since his passing I've had my younger sister round mine and my fiancé's flat loads of times and she absolutely loves spending the time with us so her mother knows we're trustworthy people and we've never done anything to breech this. Just recently the mother has got a new boyfriend (well she's had a fair few in the last few months that I'm aware of) but this particular one has moved in very soon and ever since this the contact between me and my father's ex has been completely cut off (the boyfriend may just be coincidence). She refuses to speak to me to arrange contact with my sister, she ignores all of the messages and phone calls and it's making life very tough for me considering me and her other siblings are really the only connection my sister still has to our father and I want so desperately for her to remember him as he would want to be remembered as the wonderful man and father he was. Also to top it off, I'm 36 weeks pregnant with my first child (girl) and I want nothing more than for her and my sister to have a strong bond but I know this can never happen without the regular contact. My sister is very exited to be an Aunty I'm just afraid that her mother will jeopardise this for her and twist the story (she's been known in the past to tell my sister that I'm busy with my own life and that's why I can't see her when she's the one stopping contact!)
Without wanting to make this any longer than it has to be (I understand this is a very long story) I'll give you a little background as to how manipulative this woman can be- 1 week after I lost my father she told me, all my siblings and my father's 82 year old mother that she had still been sleeping with my dad and was infact 3 months pregnant with his child, when it came to scan day she couldn't print us a picture of it because 'scanning machine was broken' and the whole story later turned out to be a complete lie, I don't know what gain she got out of lying like this but she made us believe we had a little bit more of my father to look forward to, stringing us along believing that part of him had lived on. I find this woman disgusting (would never say anything like this infront of sister, I want her to have a good relationship with her one parent she has left) and now to top it off the mother is refusing to sign a pension form to say that my sister was financially dependant on my father, even though it means her own daughter would get a good amount of money from it because she doesn't want me to get my share (not that it's the money that matters to me but would be handy with little one on the way) I'd like to also add I've always been very pleasant with this woman and stuck to her rules regarding my sister because I wouldn't want to step on anyone's toes, I tried to sweep my opinion of her under the carpet when my dad died to try and keep mine and my sister's relationship stable. My sister adored our father and I'm worried for her health too as she's being forced to bottle her emotions as she tells me 'mummy never talks about daddy with me and if I write what I feel down (like I tell her to) people read it so I can't' I've had no contact over the Christmas period and am just saddened by the whole thing.
Sorry this has dragged on! Just wanted a sane person's opinion on this as it feels like I'm going crazy! what do you guys think? Do I have any sort of 'right' by law to see my sister, I'm aware a parent will always have more than a sibling but I just know that my dad wouldn't want his children split up like this and it makes me sick that this vile woman has so much power over such a big part of my life! Anyway rant over! Thankyou so much for taking the time out to readthanks

Whatwillbexo Mon 04-Jan-16 15:07:09

Jesus that was long! (Sorry) grin

ineedamoreadultieradult Mon 04-Jan-16 15:16:06

I don't know but just wanted to say it sounds very difficult and I'm sorry for your loss flowers

Whatwillbexo Mon 04-Jan-16 15:23:43

Thankyou I appreciate that, it is slowly getting easier thanks

FarrowAndBallache Mon 04-Jan-16 15:41:33

I'm sorry for your loss.
I'm really unsure whether you have any rights over seeing your sister. I don't think you would have tbh.

Did your dad put anything in his will about his wishes for his three children to have contact with his other child?

I'd go and seek legal advice in the first instance if I were you. Sorry things are so hard flowers

Whatwillbexo Mon 04-Jan-16 15:49:26

Thankyou for your advice, I am planning on seeking legal advice was just wondering beforehand if there are any rights that stuck out, I'm aware as a sibling there's not a lot I can do but I'm hoping something will change! Sadly my father never got round to writing a will, he was paying a large sum to a life insurance company each month so he made precautions for after he died but it was so sudden I guess everyone presumed he had years left as he was only 51- it's definitely taught me never to take life for grantedstar

bobs123 Mon 04-Jan-16 16:02:21

I know very little but would imagine this woman can stop her daughter seeing you if she so wishes.

Re the pension, do you know if your dad filled in an expression of wish? Pension companies can exercise a certain amount of discretion as to who the lump sum goes to. Is it possible that she is refusing to sign as she wants it all? Did he leave a will and are you a beneficiary? You say they had split up - were they divorced?

Re the will, you can contact whoever is dealing with your dad's estate. You could also contact the pension company. Do not feel that you are being grasping, just be proactive.

I realise that it is your sister and contact that you are posting about, but don't think you will be able to do much if her mum doesn't want the two of you to see each other

Penfold007 Mon 04-Jan-16 16:31:31

I think you and your half-sister may have a right to a relationship and contact. You and your father her saw her regularly before his death and you continued to have an active relationship with her after your father's death. Hopefully somebody with far more knowledge will post with some useful guidance.

As for the pension, speak to the providers or the estate's executors they may be able to pay out to you and the other siblings and force this woman to either sign or forfeit her daughter's claim.

Whatever happens you are going to need legal advice and it may mean going to court.

I am sorry for your loss and congratulations on your pregnancy.

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