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re inheritance with no will

(21 Posts)
fleuricle Wed 25-Jan-17 21:45:06

I read the other thread.
It's not about that at all but it made me think re wills etc.

What happens in this situation:

Mother has two natural children.
Is married to the Father of one of them (ds) but father of (dd) died.
If Father dies first, and Mother leaves no will
is the estate split equally between her two natural children?
If Mother dies first and Father leaves no will,
what happens when he dies?
and, can he leave it all to son / dogs home etc.
Can the ds simply not inform the dd of any death (estrangement) if he wants?

sorry, hope that is clear?
in England, btw.

ImperialBlether Wed 25-Jan-17 21:52:08

Mother has two natural children.
Is married to the Father of one of them (ds) but father of (dd) died.
If Father dies first, and Mother leaves no will is the estate split equally between her two natural children?

Yes, if she leaves no Will and she has no husband, then her money will go to her children.

If Mother dies first and Father leaves no will, what happens when he dies?
and, can he leave it all to son / dogs home etc.

If he leaves no Will then it will automatically go to his own child.

However, he could choose to leave it to the dogs' home as long as the child doesn't reasonably need care (eg young/disabled.)

It sounds as though he's the problem - is that right?

Can the ds simply not inform the dd of any death (estrangement) if he wants?

Not legally. He could do that, but if she discovered it, she could report it. Trouble is if he's spent the money by then, what can she do?

Twinklyfaerieglade Wed 25-Jan-17 21:53:58

Bumping in the hope that someone expert can help. As a non expert, when I married a long time ago, I had a son, whose dad was not my husband to be. Had to make a will in anticipation of my marriage (it actually started with those words) in case something happened to me. Otherwise my husband would have inherited, as my long standing will would have been superseded by my new marriage. If your DH does inherit from you he can leave it to whomever he wants.

fleuricle Wed 25-Jan-17 22:03:44

I am the dd.
My half brother is the ds.
we've had no contact for 16 years.
I have sporadic contact with my Mother.
She is an odd fish.
I was brought up to believe that her husband was my Father, but discovered he was not aged 16 (pass port application). She'd lied for all my School records and sent me in in her husbands (rather than my real Father's) name. So, 'Dad' has to be treated as such (and, he is the nicest of the bunch tbf) so he gave me away at my wedding etc. but she never let him adopt me so legally he is nothing to do with me. When he had a stroke some years ago, neither she or my half brother even told me sad

She wont make a will and told me once to be 'very nice' to her husband and my half brother 'if I want anything when she goes'.

I'd at least like to be informed when the time comes, so I can attend the funeral. And yes, for my childrens sake, if there is any estate, I feel all the grandchildren (2 on each side) should have equal shares.

prh47bridge Wed 25-Jan-17 22:57:59

To add to ImperialBlether's answer (which is correct)...

If Mother dies first leaving no will the first £250k of her estate goes to Father. The remainder is split in two. Half of it goes to the children immediately. Father gets a life interest in the other half which will then be split between the children when he dies.

If Father dies first leaving no will the first £250k of his estate goes to Mother. The remainder is split in two. Half of it goes to his son immediately. Mother gets a life interest on the other half which will then go to the son when she dies.

So if Mother's estate is worth more than £250k you will be entitled to some of it if she dies without making a will regardless of who dies first. However, if she dies first your half brother is likely to end up with the lion's share of the estate and, if your mother's estate is worth less than £250k, he is likely to end up with all of it unless Father has made a will including you as a beneficiary.

fleuricle Thu 26-Jan-17 07:22:08

still a bit confused, sorry.
I am sure the estate will be worth less than 250K

so, if my mother dies first, the estate passes to 'Dad'
then it goes entirely to half brother when Dad dies?

if Dad dies first it goes to Mother.
then it is spilt between half brother and I when she dies surely???

And, does half brother LEGALLY have to inform me of either of their deaths pls?

prh47bridge Thu 26-Jan-17 08:27:05

so, if my mother dies first, the estate passes to 'Dad' then it goes entirely to half brother when Dad dies?

Yes, assuming her estate is less than £250k.

if Dad dies first it goes to Mother. then it is spilt between half brother and I when she dies surely???

Also yes, assuming his estate is less than £250k.

does half brother LEGALLY have to inform me of either of their deaths pls?

There is no legal requirement for him to inform you of the death. However, if he administers the estate and you are a beneficiary he is required to ensure that you receive your share of the estate. This applies regardless of whether you are inheriting under a will or under the intestacy rules.

fleuricle Thu 26-Jan-17 08:54:38

Thanks, prh47bridge

so, from my point of view, I have to hope it is worth less than £250K
(I am sure it would be)

So, it seems that if I am NOT a beneficiary then brother has no duty to inform me.

That is really sad news. Of course, if it wasn't such a 'stately homes' type situation it wouldn't arise, but it is a very odd dynamic of many years standing that family therapy wouldn't even scratch.

It is not so much about 'the money' (looks like I'll get none anyway) but more about being INCLUDED as an equal family member. looks like i wont get that either.

Best to know, so thank you for advice.

DolphinsNose Thu 26-Jan-17 20:01:55

prh the intestacy rules have changed and the spouse gets an absolute interest in 50% of the residue after the legacy rather than a life interest.

fleuricle Thu 26-Jan-17 20:51:21

Dolphin can you put that in lay terms, pls?

prh47bridge Thu 26-Jan-17 21:14:52

Apologies for the mistake.

Fleurical - it means that, if your mother's estate is over £250k, 'Dad' will get £250k plus half of the remainder with the other half being split between you and your brother. So if the estate was worth £350k, say, 'Dad' would get £300k, you and your brother would each get £25k.

fleuricle Fri 27-Jan-17 07:46:49

so that means that if Mother dies first and it is worth, say, £300K
Brother gets 25K, and then Dad's 250K (ie 275K total) after Dad dies
I get 25K at most?

And if it is worth 250K or less?

(sorry to be dense, just trying to get my head around this)

is there anything I can do?

fleuricle Fri 27-Jan-17 07:48:56

MOther did once, in an unstable moment (she has a lot of them!) say she wouldn't leave me anything but would make a will leaving it all to the Grandchildren .

Assuming she did it equally, that is probably the best I can hope for.
They, at least, would be deemed 'family' enough to be treated as equals

Sorry to sound bitter!

prh47bridge Fri 27-Jan-17 08:17:13

*so that means that if Mother dies first and it is worth, say, £300K
Brother gets 25K, and then Dad's 250K (ie 275K total) after Dad dies
I get 25K at most?*

No. If Mother dies first and is worth £300k Dad will get £250k plus half the remainder, so £275k in total. You and Brother will get £12.5k each. When Dad dies everything will go to Brother.

If Dad dies first and is worth £300k Mother will get £275k and Brother will get £25k. You will get nothing at that stage. When Mother dies her estate will be split between you and Brother.

If it is worth £250k or less previous answers are still correct. If Mother dies first it all goes to Dad. When he dies it all goes to Brother. If Dad dies first it all goes to Mother. When she dies it is split between you and Brother.

is there anything I can do?

Unless Mother and Dad make wills the intestacy rules will apply. Brother is free to give you some of his inheritance if he wants to do so but there is no way you can compel him to do so. Your best bet would be to persuade Mother and Dad to make wills leaving an appropriate amount to you. If they don't it is possible you might be able to make a claim against your mother's estate under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependents) Act 1975 but, as you do not appear to be financially dependent on her, that would be a long shot.

IMissGin Fri 27-Jan-17 08:29:49

If it's worth 250k or less it would all got to her husband and then eventually his son unless a will states otherwise

IMissGin Fri 27-Jan-17 08:31:14

Sorry, cross posting with much more informative one above

fleuricle Fri 27-Jan-17 10:53:19

prh47

thank you. that is crystal clear.
I am not normally dense, but I had trouble getting my head around this!
perhaps because of the emotional significance it has for me.

It is not really about the money or certainly not ALL about the money.

It is about being treated as an equal with my brother.
I was raised until age 16 being told Dad was my Father.
Then I need to apply for a passport and, guess what, he isn't (and pretty well everyone knew but me, it seems!!!)
Still I am told clearly I am to behave in the community as though he IS my Father (who died when I was a baby. Mother was married to Dad all along...) I have no problem with this. He is a nice chap who tried to adopt me legally he tells me, but Mother wouldn't let him. So, he gives me away at my Wedding etc and I behave as though he is my Dad.

Only Mother uses this stick (she has mentioned it many many times) to make it crystal clear that I am NOT equal to brother at all.
She is a really really odd person.

It is possible that Dad would choose to leave it between us.
Brother wouldn't water me if I was on fire.
Mother will not make a will I suspect and even if she did she might not include me.

My best hope is the grandchildren will option I think.
Then at least my children would be 'equal'.

Or, that it is all used in care home fees and there is nothing left to exclude me from.

All very sad.

But, thank you. It is best to be prepared, for when the time comes.

I hope I don't sound too awful blush

Klaphat Sun 29-Jan-17 04:54:37

Do you have any evidence your biological father died? It sounds terribly convenient. And like something it might not be 'dangerous' to tell you if he was, in fact, dead.

fleuricle Sun 29-Jan-17 08:39:54

Yes, he deid in an RTA when I was 12 weeks old. death cert etc. very sad.
my life would have been entirely different etc

KungFuEric Sun 29-Jan-17 09:16:08

It sounds to me like you hope for some sort of relationship with your parents, have you considered reaching out to them now?

If you haven't been in contact for 16 years then have you really been an equal to your brother?

fleuricle Sun 29-Jan-17 18:29:58

I have reached out, and reached out and reached out.
I have sent gifts, phoned, emailed.
Any visits have been from my end (I am 350 miles away).
Not sure how much more I can do.

My half brother lives 6miles away.
He hardly ever sees them, never helps them out - is always too busy.

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