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Bullying or just thoughtless and insensitive?

(27 Posts)
oneofapair Sun 13-Sep-09 09:38:50

My father is behaving in a very strange way following the death of my twin sister Caroline.

If she decided to leave me everything that was her decision and I don't understand why he should now demand that we set up a deed of variation so that "Caroline's shares can be returned to me (meaning my Dad)" and if I do so "he will no longer object to my staying in Caroline's house".

Why should I be expected to go against what Caroline wanted. She left me her shares in the family business so why does Dad demand them back? If Caroline left me her house why does he think I am not allowed to visit it.

I am feeling really bullied and I have enough to cope with without all this!!

SheWillBeLoved Sun 13-Sep-09 09:59:26

See a solicitor. If she left you these things in a legal will, and not just by 'word', then they are yours and you don't have to give them to anybody you don't want to.

warthog Sun 13-Sep-09 11:50:19

firstly, very sorry about your twin. i remember your thread from a couple of weeks ago. her death is still very recent, and you must all be feeling very raw.

in my experience, death has very different effects on people. your dad is probably feeling very hurt that he has not been left anything and is possibly taking it out on you.

Caroline has thought about this very hard, i'm sure, and if she's specified something in her will you should carry it out. it's what she wanted. is it possible that she didn't envisage dying before your dad and that's why she didn't think of leaving him anything?

legally, i'm not a lawyer, but your dad can't bully you into doing this. i would see a solicitor, but i think he has no right to demand this.

lastly, don't forget that he is hurting very much too. if you can find it in your heart to brush this strange behaviour aside and try and support each other through this awful time. try to forgive and not take to heart too much what happens in the next few months.

i'm assuming that you have a generally good relationship with him, and my advice is based on that. if not, it's obviously a lot more complex. but i don't believe you have to give him anything, if Caroline did not wish it.

oneofapair Sun 13-Sep-09 14:23:16

I always felt the relationship between my Dad and Caroline and I was OK. We did share some concerns about the way he ran the family business because he took such a large salary from the business that there was not much profit left to distribute to the shareholders (including Caroline and I).

In theory of course with Caroline's shares plus my own I can outvote him so perhaps that is the problem?

diddl Sun 13-Sep-09 14:42:29

Yes, you can now outvote him.
Which I should imagine is precisely the point.

Don´t be bullied.

If you have been left the house there is nothing he can do.
Please don´t let him make you feel guilty for what your sister has left you.

This is what your sister wanted.

If your father wants to change it, what does that say about his respect for her and her wishes?

TBH, I would have expected him to be too upset by his daughter´s death to be thinking about picking her will to pieces and trying to alter it.

I also assume all alterations he wants would be in his favour?

oneofapair Sun 13-Sep-09 17:26:10

I have gone through the complete list of changes to Caroline's will that Dad "expects" to be made.

I can see none that would benefit me and none that would not benefit him. I think I will have to take legal advice but as far as I can see there is no way Dad can make me change any of the provisions of Caroline's Will.

I am not looking forward to any meeting once he realises that I now know that I can outvote him. Perhaps he thinks I am too stupid to realise this?

KIMItheThreadSlayer Sun 13-Sep-09 17:49:05

Sorry for your loss, please get legal advice, and do not let this man bully you

CarGirl Sun 13-Sep-09 17:55:57

Is you father generally as ruthless in his personal life as well as business?

He doesn't sound a very nice person.

Does anyone other than you have keys to Caroline's house, which is now actually your house? I think you need to change the locks tbh as it sounds as though this could kick off big style.

How desparetly sad that whilst you're all grieving this is going on.

warthog Sun 13-Sep-09 18:07:00

look - death can bring out the worst in people. it doesn't sound like your dad has your interests at heart at all. but think carefully whether you want to completely fall out over this.

i'm not at all saying you should give him anything, i am saying try not to be bitter, angry and resentful of him. he's in a dark place too.

try and be professional at meetings and try and stay calm. it's likely he won't be very happy when he realises quite how on the ball you are.

diddl Sun 13-Sep-09 18:42:17

He cannot force you to force a deed of variation.

The fact that he is suggesting this suggests to me that ther eis nothing he can legally do without you.

Are you likely to want to vote against him in the business or do you generally agree with him?

The other way of looking at it is that if you both agree, things can go ahead as far as the business is concerned.

But I think you also need legal advice just to check that the will is OK as it stands and cannot be changed to your disadvantage.

oneofapair Sun 13-Sep-09 19:06:10

Dad was there when Caroline's will was read. He knows quite well that she left everything she owned to me.

His view seems to be that if I sign over Caroline's shares in the company and the money in her bank account and her shares in public companies to him he will "let me" keep her house or more exactly "stay in it".

It looks to me and it certainly seemed to be what was said when the will was gone through that he has no right to any of these things. He is trying to bluff and bluster his way to lots of money that is rightfully mine.

I've no idea why he is acting like this or why he thinks we cannot run the business much like we did in the past based on what is best for all of us.

This is all too horrible for words!

catinthehat2 Sun 13-Sep-09 19:08:14

I don't understand why you have two threads running on this.

warthog Sun 13-Sep-09 19:52:00

where is the other one?

catinthehat2 Sun 13-Sep-09 20:09:52

here but I think you found it

oneofapair Sun 13-Sep-09 20:36:07

100% my fault there are two threads. I am just too tired and stressed to think straight at present. It isn't much more than a week since Caroline's funeral and everyday seems to bring another crisis for me to cope with.

I think the relationships thread is where folk might be able to help me put things into perspective and paid experts might help with other things next week.

The first hurdle in seeing the GP on Monday without getting carted off to hospital for losing too much weight.

oneofapair Mon 14-Sep-09 20:18:53

I saw the GP and was signed off for a week and was told in no uncertain terms that unless my weight loss stops I will need to go to hospital. Not so good.

Also saw the solicitor who is dealing with Caroline's Estate. He will speak to my Dad to put him straight on the Will and to calm him down. Hopefully we can then resume something approaching a normal Dad/Son relationship. Fingers crossed here.

diddl Tue 15-Sep-09 07:19:48

Lok after yourself-and get eating if possible!

oneofapair Wed 16-Sep-09 14:06:19

My Mum and the solicitor dealing with Caroline's estate came round this morning unexpectedly.

I have agreed to stay over at the parental house for a few days despite Dad making it quite clear that I was not welcome or indeed wanted "unless and until I sign over Caroline's assets to him."

The solicitor was really shocked to hear about all the pressure Dad has been putting on me to go against what Caroline put in her will. He has now arranged to meet with Dad for what he called a "blood on the carpet" meeting - one stage above "a frank exchange of views" was how he put it.

Dad is expected back within the hour so please think of me this afternoon!sad

Lemonylemon Wed 16-Sep-09 14:44:49

Thinking of you. This situation is just awful. Stick to your guns, though, and don't be bullied - because that's exactly what's happening.

Oh, and go and eat something )

CarGirl Wed 16-Sep-09 17:13:26

Oh dear it all says horrid.

Keep eating though and stick to your guns.

more Wed 16-Sep-09 17:30:55

How did it go.
At least you have your mum's support!? Could she maybe stay at your place for a while instead of you going to them?

oneofapair Wed 16-Sep-09 18:54:43

How are you supposed to cope when your Dad screams at you saying things like "I wish it had been you that died rather than your sister" or "It disgusts me how you used your unsavoury relationship with your sister to turn her against her own father".

Why would any Dad say these things at all, never mind doing so in front of my Mum and the solicitor?

CarGirl Wed 16-Sep-09 19:09:19

sounds like he is mentally unstable?

Is there a background history about your realtionship with your father?

Lemonylemon Thu 17-Sep-09 10:21:22

It sounds like he's having a nervous breakdown, which is not of YOUR doing. Grief does strange things to people, it really does. But, that is not your problem, it is your Dad's problem.

You cope by mentally turning your back on him. You turn your back and you protect yourself. You come on here and keep posting, you speak to CRUSE to get some bereavement counselling and speak to your GP and get some counselling through the surgery practice too. You speak to the Samaritans, you just tell it like it is to whoever will listen - and you will start to get it all back together and pick up the pieces eventually.

Oh, and eat something - two pronged attack and all that.....

diddl Thu 17-Sep-09 11:10:32

Please find someone to talk to.
He might not be coping well with your sisters death, but his behaviour isn´t right IMO.

It would be handy if your mum could move in with you, but if she took "your side" over your father, it might send him over the edge, and perhaps your mum shouldn´t be put in a position of choosing.

Is ther a way you could go home and your Mum be with you every day whilst your father works?

Doyou have a friend you could stay with or who could stay with you?

Why have you agreed to stay with them?
It sounds as if that isn´t good for you or your father.

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