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Probate Office copies of wills

(18 Posts)
Abney Thu 02-Feb-17 18:50:30

Hi I am hoping someone can help me as there is so much confusion. My dad sadly passed away on 6th December and my 2 half brothers have advised me that the will left everything to them. I have not seen a copy, however, as soon as I saw my dads name appear on the Probate Registry on the 16th Jan I ordered a copy of the will. We did put a caveart in place, however, my sister accidently put a forward date of death so the caveart became null and void and unfortunately we have been advised that full probate has been granted. My dad had exchanged contracts on his house prior to passing away and the house completed its sale on the 26th Jan. I have been waiting since the 17th of Jan to see a copy of the will. They gave me an estimated delivery date of yesterday but when I went into the probate website my dads name had disappeared and now I still don't have a copy albeit I have sent an enquiry. In the mean time my brothers have cleared the house and have either thrown everything away or given it to charity. Can anyone advise me why my dads name would disappear from the on line search records and is it really possible to grant full probate in such a small amount of time. The on line search info says that the record becomes available on line 14 days after probate which then means full probate was granted on 2nd of Jan. Can full probate really be as quick as this? None of it makes any sense. Help! Potentially my half brothers may have written the will themselves!

SanityAssassin Thu 02-Feb-17 20:17:57

My Dad died last April - very straightforward just me & sibling etc - probate took months. Think you need to speak to the Probate Office.

Abney Thu 02-Feb-17 20:43:18

Hi. Thanks for your response. I have just researched some more and can see it takes 7 days to issue a grant if a solicitor has applied for it and then once given tprobate can begin which makes more sense. I understand as part of probate a bank account needs to be opened and then the money put in a trust account. The house completed on the 26th Jan so would it be possible that the solicitor has paid the money direct to my half brothers within the last week?

LeninaCrowne Thu 02-Feb-17 21:32:08

I'm not a lawyer, but wouldn't there be a notice in the Gazette? Surely the estate couldn't be settled and your brothers paid in under 2 months.

Collaborate Thu 02-Feb-17 21:35:37

I would be surprised if they'd have got probate so soon, to be honest. You have to sort out any inheritance tax first.

DanGleballs Thu 02-Feb-17 21:41:55

The probate registry can rush the grant through in circumstances, the pending completion of a sale is one of them. Two months is definitely possible.

DanGleballs Thu 02-Feb-17 21:43:38

Depends whether tax is payable. With a widower being able to use a deceased's wife's nil rate band most don't pay tax.

Abney Thu 02-Feb-17 22:29:54

Thanks everyone. Yes my dad was a widower. His 2nd wife died 4 years ago, therefore, I think both allowances add up to more than the price of the house sale i.e just short of 600 k. My dad was selling the house so that he could enjoy life a bit more without all of his money trapped in the house. It has been so tragic that he was just a few weeks away from getting the money.

SanityAssassin Thu 02-Feb-17 22:42:45

We were days from completion on his house when my dad died - contracs signed and everything - it stalled everything for months waiting for probate. HMRC wanted all sorts for tax too - not a quick process at all . Nearly a year til I saw any money,

DanGleballs Thu 02-Feb-17 22:43:05

I'm sorry for your loss flowers

HyacinthsBucket Thu 02-Feb-17 22:45:46

So sorry for your loss. Probate took around 4 months with my late FIL and that was very straightforward. Sounds highly unusual. Is it possible for you to instruct a solicitor to make enquiries as this sounds very off.

oleoleoleole Thu 02-Feb-17 22:47:07

Contact the undertaker, they usually send the bill to the solicitor dealing with probate. If you know the firm of solicitors make an appointment to see them and they might be willing to explain.

stiffstink Thu 02-Feb-17 22:49:03

It might be a Grant Ad Colligenda Bona which is used to collect in assets but not distribute them.

I find it strange that the caveat was void because of the wrong date - the Probate Reg applies it for a period of 3 days either side of the date of death they are notified with. Have you called the Leeds Probate Reg?

Abney Fri 03-Feb-17 08:23:58

Thanks everyone. The funeral place has been fullyvpaid but I think it is usual to pay it from the estate I am going to london probate office today. My sister has raised a query. They said that it was possible to reverse a grant. Once my sister sent tge caveart she rang them on at least 3 occassions as she had not received any lettters from them. Each tome they said the grant had been rejected, however, the last time she rang they said oh no it has been granted a few weeks ago.

kath6144 Fri 03-Feb-17 21:27:53

How did you get on at the Probate office today, Op, did you get any further?

Having done mums probate last year, we did it relatively quickly, it just depends if you have the figures for the form. Given that these are primarily house valuation and money in accounts, its quite possible that probate was applied for by one of your brothers very soon after death, if they had his bank account figures to hand. It doesnt have to be a solicitor applying, if brothers are executors they could apply.

Once applied for, we signed within a couple of weeks then it was granted a week or so after that. So 3-4 wks from application for us.

Ceaser1981 Fri 03-Feb-17 21:45:37

Probate in England and Wales seems to be more straightforward and you dont need a solicitor to apply for it. They will however have been required to have probate to complete the sale of the property. Id seek legal advice if i were you. I have a similar family situation where probate was granted and we got the will (same day) from gov website. I use the site often and ive never seen any granted then taken down, perhaps its because of the caveat? Hope you get some answers, its a stressful time as it is.

Abney Sat 04-Feb-17 16:04:53

Hi everyone. Thanks again. I went to the London Probate Office but they couldn't really help apart from telling me to threaten legal action against Iron Mountain for taking my £10 and then not delivering the goods. By the end of the day I did get the will. Our names were in it and it does appear to be genuine i.e. it was wrote back in 2004 when his second wife was still alive. She was an alcoholic. The will is a home will. It looks like certain sections were printed off the internet and then just adjusted slightly. It was so emotional to see the names of all of his first children from his first marriage something that our half brother did not think to tell us even when I specifically asked whether our names were in the will as it would give us some comfort. He basically told me to mind my own business and that it was no ones concern apart from the 2 beneficiaries i.e. both half brothers.

My half brothers were only 16 and 18 at the time and it looked like it was written just before his 2nd wife had a liver transplant at the age of 40. She died 8 years later due to continuous drinking. It appears that she had a bit of a death wish as she stopped taking her anti rejection tablets a year before she died, therefore, it was really important for her inheritance and my fathers to go to her 2 boys and not the children from the first marriage. We will inherit only if the 2 boys pass away before they receive the money, albeit the will does look like it is complicating itself by saying if this happens then this needs to happen but of this happens then this needs to happen and then so on. Now the issue is that we have been told there was no will as my dad could not find his or his wife's so he sought to write new wills but leave them unsigned. Directly after my dad died there was talk from both sons and my dads girlfriend that they had found unsigned wills, however, very quickly this turned to they had only found signed wills. He told a good friend that he wasn't going to leave one or if he did it would be left unsigned. The belief is now that his 2nd wife 'hid' them with her mother as 'safekeeping'. If this is true it is such a betrayal of my dad to deliberately hide the will and leave him thinking that they were simply lost. We are going to see a solicitor on Monday to see what can be done if anything.

Northernlurker Sat 04-Feb-17 16:17:47

Given that your half brothers are now adults not dependant children and your father clearly didn't intend to disinherit you altogether it certainly seems worth speaking to a solicitor.

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