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Inheritance- AIBU?

(72 Posts)
CliffRichardsPenIs Mon 16-Oct-17 13:17:32

Sorry it's another inheritance one.

My uncle died when I was about 13 and left about £40,000 to my parents with the express wish that the money be used to support me and my siblings in university

It caused friction at the time as I had cousins of a similar age but my uncle didn't think they'd go to university so left them nothing.

Anyway, neither of my siblings went to university but I did. So I asked my parents if I could have £20,00 to clear my student debt.

They said no, that's unfair to your siblings. I said fine and asked them to split the money three ways so I could address my student debt but my siblings also got some of the money.

They said no, they've basically spent it and invested it.

I asked them about this given that my uncle had expressly wanted the money to support our education. Apparently, no, that money was to support us to do, and I quote "whatever we wanted" in life.

I'm not convinced because if that was the case, why not leave any for my cousins?

Moreover, okay, let's accept that as true. What I wanted to do was go to university but, apparently, nope, no money there to support that.

I know that my uncle should have put the money in a trust or similar for us so my parents couldn't just adopt it as theirs. I just feel quite bitter than my uncle (who I loved and got on with really well) left money for our education but I'm now looking at a massive student debt.

So, AIBU here? I guess technically I am as the money is technically my parents. But I feel like morally, I'm being perfectly reasonable!

CliffRichardsPenIs Mon 16-Oct-17 13:19:55

I should say as well that knowing that money was there was a reason for me choosing to go to university (i.e. that I wouldn't have to worry too much about debt).
I didn't talk to my parents about this at the time though.

5foot5 Mon 16-Oct-17 13:22:23

with the express wish

Was this written in to the will or was it just by word of mouth?

19lottie82 Mon 16-Oct-17 13:23:16

Do they acknowledge that they should have kept it for your education?

Did your parents expand on the part of the money that they have "invested"? Can they cash in these investments?

Also the part they spent? Was it essential spending to keep you in your home as a child ect?

Have they suggested a solution to the problem, or just said, tough?

PurpleWithRed Mon 16-Oct-17 13:24:59

What 5foot says - if it wasn’t written down it didn’t happen, sadly.

19lottie82 Mon 16-Oct-17 13:25:14

It was a bit silly though if you to go to uni on the premise of this money, without discussing it with your parents.

I wouldn't feel too disadvantaged about have a "huge student loan debt", pretty much all students do. Not that that will help you much in this situation however!

zzzzz Mon 16-Oct-17 13:26:26

DId he put in the will it was for uni?

CliffRichardsPenIs Mon 16-Oct-17 13:26:40

5foot I don't know. I was only 13 at the time. I've not seen the will. I think asking to see it would cause massive upset.

19lottie Nope, they've completely changed the story from it being left for our education to it being to support to do "whatever we want". So, yeah, basically the message is tough.

They spent it on central heating when I was 15, a massive family holiday when I was 16 and the rest they've invested but tied up with their other stuff so it's not like "here's the separate uncle Cliff pot" that we could, technically, have if they cashed in.

zzzzz Mon 16-Oct-17 13:27:46

You can read the will without your parents knowledge

CliffRichardsPenIs Mon 16-Oct-17 13:28:52


It was a bit silly though if you to go to uni on the premise of this money, without discussing it with your parents

Yep, retrospect is a wonderful thing! I didn't think I needed to discuss it because it was so there in our lives. It'd caused a massive rift between my mum and all her siblings and between me and my cousins so there was absolutely no doubt it was for our education. So I just didn't think it needed to be discussed. It'd be like checking your parents weren't going to move house and not tell you while you were away at university- just not necessary grin

Shouldileavethedogs Mon 16-Oct-17 13:28:54

You can order copies of wills if they went through probate

CliffRichardsPenIs Mon 16-Oct-17 13:29:26

zzzz How do I go about this though?

19lottie82 Mon 16-Oct-17 13:29:31

Are you sure it was intended for your education? If your parents are now saying that wasn't the case, and were only 13 you might have got the wrong end of the stick.
Surely if that's what your uncle wanted he would have put it in a trust?

That aside I don't think there's anything you can do here.

MorrisZapp Mon 16-Oct-17 13:29:32

Wills are public record. You can apply for a copy. If you're in Scotland I can tell you how, sure others know how it's done in England.

CliffRichardsPenIs Mon 16-Oct-17 13:29:50

What would I need to know for that? Name? DOB? DOD?

CliffRichardsPenIs Mon 16-Oct-17 13:31:11

19lottie It definitely was because he'd been very clear that he assumed me and siblings would go to university and my cousins wouldn't. It caused massive upset about aunt/uncles parenting abilities, aspirations/abilities of my cousins compared to us etc.

lalalalyra Mon 16-Oct-17 13:31:27

You don't need to ask them to see the will, you can get a copy of any will that has been through probate.

You should be prepared for what you may find though.

lalalalyra Mon 16-Oct-17 13:32:28

bigbluebus Mon 16-Oct-17 13:32:50

You can get a copy of the Will by going on the Gov.UK website. It costs £10. That would tell you if your Uncle specifically stated his intentions towards you in his Will - although I should imagine that trying to get the money if he did specify will result in a huge fall out with your family.

CliffRichardsPenIs Mon 16-Oct-17 13:34:21

Thanks everyone- no idea you could do this grin

bigblue Yeah, that's what I'm a bit concerned about to be honest. Better to just seethe quietly for the rest of my life... probably! grin

MissConductUS Mon 16-Oct-17 13:36:42

Because they go through probate wills are public documents.

Have a look. If it specifically says it was to support your educational needs the executor is responsible and you should consult a solicitor who handles estate matters. A simple letter to your parents may resolve the situation.

By the way, the money doesn't need to be segregated. If you know what went into the account and what investment return it's earned since that's sufficient.

I know that this will cause resentment on the part of your parents, but if the will specifically for you and your siblings university attendence, you've been robbed, literally.

19lottie82 Mon 16-Oct-17 13:39:56

I'd want to get a copy of the will to satisfy my curiosity, if anything! Then if it does specify specific terms you can decide whether to take it up with your parents or not.

BrieAndChilli Mon 16-Oct-17 13:41:01

I would get a copy of the will. Just for your peace of mind
You will either find out that it was left to your parents unconditionally and they just said the stuff about uni to stop your cousins/aunt from going on about not getting anything or the uni thing was verbally so you have. I legal recourse.
If the will does specifically state it’s for uni then you are well within your rights to push for it to be given to you.

whatathingtosay Mon 16-Oct-17 13:46:56

I think, as is so often the case, there is a moral right and a legal right and the two aren't necessarily the same. It may well be that you have a moral but not a legal right to the money - the only way you can know for sure is to get a copy of the will.

diddl Mon 16-Oct-17 13:51:36

You would have thought that if he was that bothered he would have made sure that it went to you & your siblings or was left in trust for that specific purpose.

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