Mum fighting Dad's Will(10 Posts)
I am at my wits end and wonder if anyone might have advice for us, I’ll try and be brief
My dad died in November, he had been ill for a while and latterly was in a lovely care home.
My mum is fairly healthy but seems to be confused she is in Scotland, my sibling is in England and I am overseas.
My dad’s will is causing massive problems.
10 years ago when the law in Scotland changed to take into consideration property in the calculation of Care Home fees, my parents changed their wills to leave 50% of property to surviving spouse and 25% to my sibling and me. At the time my mum was very excited about the change and kept talking about how smart they were to plan ahead. We discussed in detail that it did not mean we (my DS and I) would own the property it just meant we would ‘hold’ the asset we would NOT have say in anything to do with the house while either parent were still alive and capable.
However, now with my dad’s death my mum is claiming to have no memory of this clause, and she wants 100% of the property, she says she feels like the house is not hers and is really being quite horrible about the whole thing. My DS and I don’t want to sign over the inheritance as we think it is financially unwise and goes against my Dad’s wishes, we DO NOT want to ‘cash in’ we just want to protect the Asset, if my mum ends up going into care and the house has to be sold to pay for her care then we at least will have 50% of it to pay for additional care as we see necessary we are not looking at it as money for us. We see the house as my mums and she has 100% control over it.
I feel like my mum does not trust my DS and I to do the right thing, she is treating us like advisory’s and is refusing to believe we have her best interest at heart and am only trying to do the right thing.
I would appreciate any thoughts and help.
I think it sounds like your mum is grieving and stressed and has somehow decided that you're going to sell it from under when you're clearly not.
It's awkward with you all dotted about, is there anyway you can meet? Sounds like she needs reassuring.
What is the phrasing in the will about the bequest, is it a lifetime interest or similar (not familiar with Scottish Law), does it give your mum the right to live there?
If your mum is confused then I think you are right to stick by what she and your dad jointly agreed when they were both in full health.
My parents did the same and after my Dad's death DDis and I signed something to say that my Mum had full control over what happened to the house (i.e. She could sell and use the money to buy another house) and that she had full use of the house until her death.
Can you ask a solicitor to draw up something similar to give her piece of mind?
It was her solicitor who suggested we do this and they were surprised the sol who did the will hadn't done it.
Thanks you all so much for responding, my mum is grieving and is stressed, we my DS and I have spend hours on the phone with her explaining it all and reassuring her - we thing she gets it then it starts again. We have both even written it down so she can read it - but that has not helped.
The Will did not have a 'Tenancy' agreement, but my DS and I have both written to the Solicitor asking for that to be put in writing to give her some comfort - but that has not helped she still claims she does not feel like it is her house. A
Also apparently according to he Solicitor under Scottish Law a 50% shareholder she has a statutory right to live in the property.
I have to say I am completely underwhelmed at this solicitor but that is another story...
Now my mum wants to make my DS and me responsible for the upkeep of the house split 3 ways - not least that is not reflective of the ownership, she wants this in writing but does not want to have to consult with either of us. Now I would have no problem helping her out financially, but she has significantly more money that either of us and will not have to worry about the upkeep of the house.
I am so very sad and frustrated by this never in a 100 years would I have thought something like this would happen.
Thanks again for all your thoughts
Oh blimey. I feel like she can't have it both ways to be honest. I can see she might think she's keeping the 'investment' nice for you but I don't think I'd agree to that without finding out if it's an term of the inheritance.
It sounds like she is lashing out a bit at those closest.. the problem really is that she has found something to "fight" and is clinging on to it regardless. Its difficult to see savvy people suddenly become unreasonable. My grandmother wrote me out of her will a few months before her death even though i was the only relative that looked after her and lived within 300 miles of her!
How is her health generally?
DS and I have spend hours on the phone with her explaining it all and reassuring her - we thing she gets it then it starts again. We have both even written it down so she can read it - but that has not helped.
Is there any chance that she is experiencing memory loss above and beyond the impact of grief. Could your father have been helping her to mask it? Her reactions sound a little like those of my mother in the early stages of dementia. Would either of you be able to have her over for a short holiday to assess whether she needs more help? It could of course be the grief.
You could (as we had to do after fil died), do a Deed of Variation to the will, and set up an Interest In Possession (IIP) trust. What this effectively does is stick your half of the property into trust, but gives her the right to remain in the house until she dies, goes into care, or wishes to end the trust and sell. The trustees on ours are dh, bil and mil, who caused similar ructions. Mil is responsible for all the upkeep of the property and insuring it. We are supposed to inspect it every so often, but she makes that impossible. We only communicate via solicitors.
I think you have to pay for the legal work, as the beneficiary of the DoV can't be seen to pay for it.
Join the discussion