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As far as I know, the will has distributed the state to direct memebrs of the family Ann, Linda and brother Mark. There is also money allocated to Lindas sons and for one of Ann's sons.
Linda and her sons have done very well well by the mohters estate adn both Linda and one of her sons were brough property.
Linda has told her mother who is now 80 and cannot remeber what is said one day to the next, that Ann is not to see the will as it is not her business.
Linda wrote down parts of the will that she deemed Ann needed to see and left this with her mother to give to Ann. This where Ann saw that she had a tax liabaility but she does not know the extent of this and for exactly what it is.
Her mother is scared of Linda so will not let Ann see the will.
Her mother does not understand finances at all and cannot answer Ann's concerns re the tax liability, she just tells Ann that LInda deals with everyhting as she knows the processes.
Ann needs to see the will so that she understands the extent of her liabilities, is ther enay way in whcih this can be enforced?
Ann, Linda and Mark all have power of a ttorney I do not know if this is joint or several.
Linds has registered her POA with her mother'she bank so has direct access to her mothers money, Ann has no dealings with her mother's money.
If themother is still alive and it is not possible to contest will, or insist onseeing it before the person writing the will (the testatrix) has died.
Wills and estate admin can be contested on various grounds
1If a person doesn't provide for dependents, children incl adopted children ofall ages and a spouse (but not step children unless they have been treated asthe deceased's own children) in a will it can contested by making a claim under the THE INHERITANCE (PROVISIONFOR FAMILY AND DEPENDANTS) ACT 1975.
Details are here
2Undue influence if it is thought that the person making the will had been "gotat" when drafting the will. That might be a distinct possibility here
3Or if, when drafting the will the person lacked mental capacity/didn't knowwhat he/she was doing this might also be a distinct possibility
There are strict time limitsfor contesting will under 1 above of 6 months from death.
Claims under 2 or 3 above 12months.
Claims under 4, no time limit.
Promissory Estoppell. This is atechnical legal doctrine not used very often. It says that if anyone has beenpromised something during the lifetime of a person and they relied on that promise to theirdetriment then they are entitledto have whatever was promised. The classic case is indeed the young man on thefarm, who is told by the old man "don't go off to seek your fortune son, but stickwith me and work on the farm and I will leave it to you when I die,".
So the young man doesn't go offto seek his fortune and stays and works on the farm and it turns out that whenthe old man dies he leaves everything in his estate to the prize cow, Daisy orhis new girlfriend, who is 30 years younger than he is. In that case, the youngman having given up a future (to his detriment) on the basis that one day (hewas promised) the farm would be his and he believed it and relied on it, he canget a court order that the farm is transferred to him. Such claims are notcheap or quick to bring in do require a large burden of proof of the promiseand reliance to detriment.
Anyone can get a copy of a willonce it has been admitted to probate from HM probate registry, upon the paymentof five pounds.Anyone can also hold up the granting of probate by entering a caveat at theprobate registry. At least, they will then find out if there is a will. Theentering of a caveat will certainly wake up any executors. Some explanatorydetails are here;http://www.anthonygold.co.uk/site/ang_articles/ang_articles_filing_a_caveat_first_step_in_contesting_a_willIfthere is no will the estate is distributed under terms of the rules ofintestacyhttp://www.adviceguide.org.uk/england/relationships_e/relationships_death_and_wills_e/who_can_inherit_if_there_is_no_will___the_rules_of_intestacy.htm
A person can register a standing search at the probate registry,which must be renewed every six months and it will tell them if anyone appliesfor probate. When they do, they can then apply for a caveat.
If anyone is considering litigating the matter on any of thegrounds above, they can make an application to court for pre-action disclosureof the will and can ask the court to award costs against the executor. If theapplication fails, costs can be awarded against the applicant.
A person cannot saddle another person with a tax liability in awill, although a bequest of property or money or whatever can carry its ownliability.
There are two ways that inheritance tax is dealt with in a will:
1 the inheritance tax is paid on the overall estate and each of theassets passes free of inheritance tax, provided there is enough money to paythe tax from everything else. Or
2 each of the assets bears its own tax in which case the taxliability is divided across the whole estate
If Anna thinks that Linda is spiriting money away. Then she isabusing her position and that is a matter for an application to court to haveher removed as a Attorney.
Sheshould not be worried about getting a tax bill because the only tax that shecan be possibly asked to pay is inheritance tax or whatever it is that sheinherits.
Doesthat answer the question? Can I answer any specific points?
I will go back to Ann to explore these options, it may take a day or so. Can I return to yuo then if any further specific questions arise?
Your reponse has been very helpful
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