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If you are left money in a will, how long after someone dies do you get the money?

31 replies

MrsSchadenfreude · 16/08/2006 20:45

My mother was left a significant sum of money by her partner when he died earlier this year. The rest went to his niece, who is a solicitor and also executor of the will. My Mum knows she was a significant beneficiary of the will and is concerned that she is not going to see the money as it is now about 6 months since her partner died and she has heard nothing. And is there any way that the other beneficiary can stop her getting her inheritance?

OP posts:
flipflopper · 16/08/2006 20:55

I got money off my gran 6 months after she died, and we all thought that was a long time.
I would def get in touch with the niece. Is she allowed t be an executor of te will if she is a beneficiary?
Sorry I havent helped, hope someone else can offer you more advice.

NAB3 · 16/08/2006 20:56

You can be a beneficiary and an executor. You have 12 months after the death to release the money but it is usually done sooner. Usually once probate is granted I think. I would get a copy of the will (costs £5) and then she will know for sure what she was left.

FrayedKnot · 16/08/2006 20:57

No it takes ages. A relative of mine died earlier this year and probate has not yet been granted.

Do you know if a separate solicitor is dealing with his affairs or is the neice the solicitor, executor AND beneficiary?

I get the impression you or your mother don;t trust her?

merrily · 16/08/2006 21:00

It can take a long time, so I wouldn't automatically assume your mum is being ripped off! There is a lot of paperwork involved. Definitely follow it up with the niece though, your mum is entitled to know what is happening.

MrsSchadenfreude · 16/08/2006 21:04

It's not that my mother doesn't trust her - she hardly knows her. It's just that this has happened to her before - she was left something in a relative's will but didn't get it in the end. She doesn't want to contact this woman as she doesn't want to appear grasping, but she has seen a copy of the will as her partner showed it to her after he had changed it, so knows that she was a beneficiary, for sure.

How would she get a copy of the will? Can this only happen after probate has been granted?

OP posts:
mummy2jake · 16/08/2006 21:34

hi my father died almost 6 months ago and he never left a will but the money in his estate is going to me and my two younger brothers.
waiting for the probate to be granted and come through has been the delay solicitor said the money should come through any day
surely if your mother was a beneficiary she might be able to contact the solicitor dealing with it.

KathH · 16/08/2006 21:41

It depends - do this for a job & 6 months is not a long time not to receive any money. Generally it depends how the money was left, it in the form of a legacy then its usually quicker but if its in the form of "my residuary estate" then it can take a while because it has to be worked out what the residuary estate is (which is everything after debts, legacies etc) & assets etc may have to be sold. My Gran died last July & I was an executor & a beneficiary, its definately ok to be both, & I didnt get any money till February as we had to sell the house which was a major part of her estate.

MrsSchadenfreude · 16/08/2006 21:56

Thanks for your help. The house does have to be sold, so I would imagine that would slow things down. My Mum doesn't know who the solicitor is, who is dealing with it, so can't contact them. If she is a named beneficiary, presumably they do have to give her the money and can't just slide it into their own accounts.

OP posts:
KathH · 16/08/2006 21:56

By the way, its considered good practice to let beneficiaries know whats going on & maybe even if they cant release all of the money due to her she (the niece I mean) should have an idea of whats going on re a timescale & could make her an interim payment? I think your mum should contact her, dont worry about appearing grasping its what her partner wanted her to have. Also by the way the Executors year only means that the Executors would have to have a good reason why the estate hadnt been distributed & your mum would be entitled to interest, sadly it doesnt mean that the Estate has to been distributed in a year.

MrsSchadenfreude · 16/08/2006 22:02

Yes, I thought the niece should let my Mum know what is going on. I think that is worrying her - the niece would not necessarily know that my Mum knows she is a beneficiary and my Mum thinks she might be doing a runner with the lot!

OP posts:
KathH · 16/08/2006 22:14

I would get your mum to contact her local probate registry so that she could at least find out whether Probates been granted - if it has it will give executors details & at least your mum would have a name & address of who the executors are or an address for the solicitors who she can contact. It does cost for this from what I can remember altho I cant actually remember how much, small amount I think. Once Probate has been granted then wills become available for anyone to look at so she may be able to get a copy of it or at least look at a copy.

We've had beneficiaries ring up literally the day after someone's died so think your mum is showing great restraint!

dbonniec · 13/10/2006 16:04

My father passed away March this year, probate was granted Sept this year, yet the solicitor still hasnt got the monies in, why is it taking so long. Inheritance tax has been paid, $ of us have goyt a share of the real estate whilst his brother has been given the home, and a local charity some monies, but as he was tthe only living family member( my father) why is there a delay, is this normal!

clarinsgirl · 13/10/2006 16:30

I wouldn't worry too much about the delay, probate can take a while then all of his affairs will need to be sorted (bank accounts closed etc). However, as Executor of the will, the niece has a responsibility to inform beneficiaries of progress so should be keeping your Mum up to date.

BloodRedRubyRioja · 13/10/2006 16:38

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Branster · 13/10/2006 16:47

I read somewhere that you can view any will at Somerset House. I think there was a fee to pay (less that £10 in I remember correctly).
Until probate is granted, as far as I know, bank accounts etc will not be closed.

Judy1234 · 13/10/2006 19:42

It took nearly 2 years for my mother's money to be distributed. Probate lawyers seem to work to different timescales to anyone else and I think also getting the tax office to deal with forms you have to send to them can take months and months, so not just lawyer delays. She should be getting regular updates. She should write to the solicitor asking for an update. My mother's used to send my father regular bills (!) and updates throughout and he asked them to copy me in by email.

Bansine111 · 29/09/2018 11:56

Hello. I am grateful to come across this thread as I am going through a situation where secrets and lies are bountiful at a time when we need our family most, I read a quote recently which read" some of the most poisonous people come disguised as family". I wonder if someone could please give me some honest and sincere advice. What happens when, for instance my grandfather passed away, he'd appointed a solicitor to draw up his will and my mum was the executor and my sister and I both beneficiaries, what does the solicitor do with the will? Is there a legal process? Thanks. I am in the UK

CanadianJohn · 30/09/2018 15:16

I've been an executor a couple of times... I am in Ontario, Canada, but I doubt the process is much different in England.

In the most recent case, the money was to be divided evenly between seven beficiaries. There was a house to sell (it sold in a week), and various debts to be paid, and accounts and investments to be consolidated. There was also income tax to be paid.

I opened an account "Estate of ..." and all the money, whether in or out, flowed thru that account. All the beneficiaries were entitled to a copy of the will, and I also sent a copy to a distant relative who was NOT in the will - he specifically requested a copy.

Partly because the house sold so quickly, after six months I was able to send each beneficiary a financial statement and a cheque for about 90% of their inheritance. The balance was held back until the income tax people got their share, and then I disbursed the rest. The whole process took about 10 months.

Alwayscheerful · 01/10/2018 22:44

I think named beneficiaries should receive their bequests within 6 months. Payments to Residual beneficiaries can take for ever! But realistically, interim payments can be made until the estate accounts are complete.

pacer142 · 02/10/2018 08:28

From my experience as executor of my mother's relatively simple estate (and I'm a qualified accountant), everyone works at a snail's pace. I did my part as quickly as humanly possible, but it was still six months before I got probate. I've seen glaciers move more quickly than banks, HMRC and the probate office. Trouble is things are done in a specific order, so you can't, eg. get probate until HMRC has processed the IHT form. You can't do anything until you have a death certificate (which her GP couldn't be arsed to provide until I chased him daily, meaning even the funeral was delayed). Not only slow service from the public bodies involved, but also inefficiency at every turn, with banks losing the death certificate, HMRC initially rejecting the IHT return which was correctly completed (their error in not knowing a threshold had recently changed!), lazy probate office who misfiled the application form and then insisted on the same six week deadline from them finding the form, rather than actually receiving the form. After my experience, I certainly wouldn't blame solicitors for delays, as I say, I did everything I could as quickly as possible and with 100% accuracy - everyone else was inefficient and slow. But, as is usual with public service, they know you're a captive audience and can't take your business elsewhere so there's no incentive for them to improve.

AssignedNorthernAtBirth · 02/10/2018 12:25

If there's a house that needs to be sold, six months is fuck all. Even as a named beneficiary not residue, there might not be enough other assets to pay her without the house sale, so she could easily have to wait for that.

EthelHornsby · 02/10/2018 19:57

My dad died well over 2 years ago and we are still selling the house, so the estate cannot be would up yer. Took about 2-3 months to get probate

Rebecca36 · 03/10/2018 23:14

I'm interested in this thread because I am a beneficiary in a will. Person died early this year. Probate granted about April I think. I heard from solicitors who said they would contact me when things were sorted (my words). I had to send them some identification. Heard again when they said an offer was made on house and was I OK with it, which of course I was.

House has been sold (found it on Rightmove and then looked on Estate Agents website), exchange took place about eleven or twelve days ago and now house is no longer on website so I presume it has officially been bought and new people moved in.

So now I wait. I know how the op's mother feels because I too don't want to appear money grabbing, which I'm not by nature, but at the same time I won't feel relaxed until it is all over. I've not contacted the executor nor the solicitors since they last wrote to me - and I won't.

I never dreamed the waiting would be so stressful!

We'll get there though!

thenightsky · 05/10/2018 11:08

When my mum died it took almost a year to the date of her death for the money to come to me. It was the most straightforward of wills - half to me, half to my sister. No house to sell.

Fragolino · 06/10/2018 23:09

Whatever the time scales your mum should do some asking around and ask to be kept updated as to what's going on

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