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It’s an inheritance one!

(308 Posts)
Sadinside Sun 28-Jun-20 04:23:57

Sadly FIL died last year after a truly harrowing illness. He left DH and SIL each 40K. MIL has never really been involved with money, having always kept that as FIL’s domaine - bit old fashioned. The will was old - 20 years old. DH suggested MIL quickly got bank statements together to tot up value of savings and assets - as he was executor. The initial tot up came back as 120K. This would mean once DH and SIL were paid out - she’d have the house (worth about 300K plus 40K savings) - she’s 72 and in good health. DH asked me what I thought, and my immediate feeling was that both siblings should really hand back the will to MIL in order to give her savings and home options (she was talking about moving into a modern house). Papers were signed handing back the money to MIL. Everyone happy. Fast forward about a month, the solicitor is undertaking bank searches and unearths 200K that MIL had no idea about. Suddenly she’s a wealthy widow. No parent / child discussion about giving back the inheritance to anyone. Covid hits, DH has pay slashed, we can’t afford our mortgage and are selling up to move to a much smaller house. The inheritance would have kept our house. MIL In the meantime declares she’s staying put in the old big house. I’ve spoken to no one about this because I feel a bit ashamed of feeling pissed off at an elderly grieving lady. Ive not told DH that I feel his mum has acted a bit sneakily ...but that actually is how I feel. AIBU to feel kind of diddled? The money’s not mine, I’ve never banked on anything but I know in same position I wouldn’t do that do my own kids! Do I need to mentally let this go? We move in August and I just find myself avoiding MIL on phone, I can’t feel the same way about her having previously got on pretty well for years.

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heartonastring Sun 28-Jun-20 04:30:57

Why didn't you follow the wishes on the will? Does it mean that your DH didn't receive any inheritance?
If that's the case then his share was "spent" giving it back to his mum.
Really sorry to hear you have to move because of the virus. It's a really awful time right now.

chatterbugmegastar Sun 28-Jun-20 04:34:51

I'm really not clear why the Will was not followed. Was£40 k not enough for MIL and if not why?

Ask MIL for an advance on DHs inheritance to help you keep your home

FirstClassFlightHome Sun 28-Jun-20 04:36:03

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

FirstClassFlightHome Sun 28-Jun-20 04:37:22

Ask MIL for an advance on DHs inheritance to help you keep your home.

I think that might be classed as degradation of assets.

Sadinside Sun 28-Jun-20 04:38:26

@heartonastring - we didn’t follow the wishes on the will because the will was so out of date (20 years!) - it was ridiculously simplistic just a page of A4 and it was clear from the details that FIL hadn’t wanted to give the thing a lot of time. After the initial ‘tot up’ it seemed crazy that MIL would only have 40K left for retirement and would be forced to sell her house to fund any care or have income. It really felt like the right thing to do at the time. What I was really upset at was the silence from her once the solicitor unearthed 200K - I genuinely don’t think she knew about that money though.

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StillCoughingandLaughing Sun 28-Jun-20 04:38:43

Why on earth did you push to give it to her in the first place? You say the will was old - did your in-laws suffer some kind of financial hardship in the meantime that made you feel your mother-in-law could no longer ‘afford’ for the terms to be honoured?

BarbedBloom Sun 28-Jun-20 04:41:29

I wouldn't have given back the full amount personally, but what's done is done. Have you told MIL that you are having to move due to money issues?

Sadinside Sun 28-Jun-20 04:43:53

@StillCoughingandLaughing - tbh after FIL’s death she understandably put the clamps on spends, as a lot of people do when they’ve forked out for funeral etc. The reduced pension also kicked in after 3 months and she was pleading on going poverty. To boot, SIL’s life went tits up (don’t want to go into that) and she ended up back home as an adult lodger and is still there. Sorry complicated.

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heartonastring Sun 28-Jun-20 04:44:17

I can see, op, that you acted out of kindness and integrity but I think it's 2 separate issues. Your mil is not responsible for you having to move (although if I were in her position, i would want to help my son and family if possible.)

Tlollj Sun 28-Jun-20 04:44:27

I don’t understand why you would give your mil the money. She had the house and 40k.
She understands enough about money to hang on to it now.
I also don’t understand why you didn’t ask for any when it became clear you were going to lose your house.
Did your sil give her money to her as well?

Sadinside Sun 28-Jun-20 04:47:13

@BarbedBloom ....clearly what’s done is done now and I know there’s bloody nothing to be gained from sitting here seething - but I am and actually nobody knows about it. She does know that we are moving, yes. But she doesn’t know it’s because we are strapped and DH has had pay slashed....I do think at the opportune moment I’m going to tell her that - DH hasn’t given reasons why.

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Sadinside Sun 28-Jun-20 04:50:10

@heartonastring - you are right. She is not responsible for us having to move.I suppose it’s just knowing that if we’d had that cushion, we could have stayed til things picked up.

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Sadinside Sun 28-Jun-20 04:54:06

@Tlollj - there’s no way DH would have asked for cash. Yes, SIL gave up her 40K too on DH’s advice - we all thought it was the right thing to do at the time. SIL has a history of running up debt by borrowing against assets - she lost her own house by taking out secured loans that she couldn’t repay. Had she got the inheritance, there was worry all round that it would be gone in months.

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Rainbowqueeen Sun 28-Jun-20 04:56:12

Op I’d be really upset too

I completely understand why you did what you did. With the handing back of the money, did the documentation include any conditions round that eg making it null and void if more money was located?

How does your DH feel about asking nicely if your mum is willing to give you the money back? If he doesn’t want to, or she won’t when asked, the only thing you can do is accept that and move on
Sorry

Harriedharriet Sun 28-Jun-20 04:57:24

But OP if she does not know she cannot help. You need to tell her why you are moving tout suite.

Tlollj Sun 28-Jun-20 05:00:20

So your mil has 320k plus the 300k house and you’re having to sell up?
Why would you not say something?
If it was one of my kids I would give them money to save their house, even if it was a loan ( it wouldn’t be in my case)
I think you’ve been treated very badly here and I don’t blame you for seething.

Ijustreallywantacat Sun 28-Jun-20 05:02:41

Why is when she explains she hasn't got cash, she's 'pleading poverty'? And when you are talking about being strapped...that's ok?

I understand you are frustrated. Some tough times recently. You had much more of my sympathy until you used that term. Surely better to have a conversation with her about life in general? How is she coping since death? Is she worried about having to use that money given reduced pension? If she spent a long time depending on her H, she might be very poor in her management of money and so would be reluctant to relinquish any. When you genuinely listen and be ready to hear others, they will hopefully return the favour.

Sadinside Sun 28-Jun-20 05:05:43

@Harriedharriet - we are 2 weeks from exchange now, it’s too far progressed. We are self builders - I built this house for the family so I am devastated to leave. Thinking about it the 40k would be a sticking plaster over a wound. Selling up helps our financial hole a lot more. I need perspective. The family are meeting today for a socially distant cup of tea - I’ve declined to go - partly cos I’ve got the hump; I feel admit it.

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Purpleartichoke Sun 28-Jun-20 05:07:30

200k does not a wealthy widow make.

I would not take money that my surviving parent might need for expenses. At 72 she could have another 30 years to finance.

CantSleepClownsWillEatMe Sun 28-Jun-20 05:08:40

I don’t understand why you and dh haven’t said anything to her. What’s stopping him from explaining the situation and asking for help, is it stubborn pride or a fear that she’ll say no and he’ll have to acknowledge to himself what that says about her?

One thing’s for sure: there’s no flies on your mil! Dh and his sister signed their inheritance over to her out of concern for her future. Surely on discovering that actually there was another 200k in the pot, it occurred to her that she might now give back the money that was intended to be theirs.

Sadinside Sun 28-Jun-20 05:09:45

@Ijustreallywantacat she might be very poor in her management of money and so would be reluctant to relinquish any - that is true. We’ve been lovely to her btw with no expectation. She came and stayed after the death for a good while, this is just about how I feel with the financial events that have followed.

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chatterbugmegastar Sun 28-Jun-20 05:09:59

I’ve declined to go - partly cos I’ve got the hump; I feel admit it.

You agreed to break the will

Now more money has been found you feel MIL should give you some without you asking for it

If the above is correct you're being unreasonable

skylarkdescending Sun 28-Jun-20 05:10:53

I think MIL needs to know the reason you are moving, even if the house sale has progressed too far to stop. Financial support will still be useful as a buffer until DH situation improves. Then, if she still doesn't offer any help you know what kind of person she is and can make decisions on your relationship with her going forward. If you don't tell her it will leave an unresolved issue and you will struggle to move past it.

BoomBoomsCousin Sun 28-Jun-20 05:11:25

I would feel the same in your position, OP. I see why you did what you did. It was considerate of your MiLs needs and the "right" thing to do from your perspective. Now your MiL has found out she wsn't int he same situation as everyone thought and instead of reconsidering accepting your generosity, she's just enjoying her good fortune. That would rankle.

But I don't think there's much to be done that wouldn't end up being a lot nastier than you having to live in a smaller house. You could suggest to your DH that he ask his mum for the 40K again since she's found the money and you're now in a worse financial position. Possibly (especially since she hasn't been concerned with finances over the course of her life) it hasn't really occurred to her how connected these things are. But it risks spoiling your DH's relationship with her.

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