How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Clare Your Own Question
Clare
Clare, Solicitor
Category: UK Law
Satisfied Customers: 33301
Experience:  family solictor with 25 years experience
13262538
Type Your UK Law Question Here...
Clare is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My unmarried sister passed away leaving no will. We Six Siblings

Customer Question

My unmarried sister passed away leaving no will. We Six Siblings have inheritted from our Mother two Properties. The Conveyance Document states that we are "IN FEE SIMPLE as TENANTS-IN-COMMON" My late sister left a Declaration stating that her 1/6 inheritance should go to a non member of our family. I am the last surviving of the six siblings and my sister's next of kin. Is this Legal?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: UK Law
Expert:  Aston Lawyer replied 1 year ago.
Hello and thanks for using JustAnswer.
My name is ***** ***** am happy to assist you with your enquiry.
As you all held the properties as Tenants in common, all of you held a separate 1/6th share, which share can be left to a named individual under a Will or a lifetime declaration.
Therefore, provided your sister did indeed sign a Declaration stating that she was holding her 1/6th share for this named individual, it is indeed legal, and upon her passing, her share does now pass to the non family member.
I am sorry this is not the answer you may have wanted, but it sets out the legal position.
Kind Regards
Al
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your response.
Expert:  Aston Lawyer replied 1 year ago.
Thanks.
If I have assisted, I would be grateful if you could rate my answer.
Kind Regards
Al
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The declaration only stated that her 1/6 is left to the named individual.Nothing about holding same for the named individual.
Expert:  Aston Lawyer replied 1 year ago.
Hi,
What exactly does the declaration say?
Kind Regards
Al
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
1".That my 1/6 interest in the properties should go to the individual." The Declaration was signed in 2003.
Expert:  Aston Lawyer replied 1 year ago.
Hi,
Thanks.
Not sure if you have quoted the full wording of the declaration, but if the document indicates that your sister has declared that her 1/6th share is to pass to the individual, or that her share is held on trust in some format for the individual, then it is a binding document.
If there was any dispute as to its validity, any Court looks at what your sister's intention was and if it was for this individual to have her share, then that is what the Court will say should happen.
Kind Regards
Al
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
2.The declaration has nothing to say she was holding her 1/6 on behalf of the named individual.
Expert:  Aston Lawyer replied 1 year ago.
Hi,
Are you able to forward a copy of the declaration?
Al
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I am unable to forward the declaration.However,t he main points without addresses etc.
1.That my 1/6 interest in property situated (address given) which I am entitled by virtue of Voluntary Conveyance dated 13/10/1986
2. Same as above for second property.
3.I trust that my family will comply with my wishes and declaration.
4.I hereby devise my interest in the above properties to the individual.
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Hi
Thank you for your question.
My name is Clare
I will do my best to help you but I need some further information first.
Which part of the Uk are you in?
Clare
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I am in Essex.
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Hi
What was her relationship with the person who she named; and what were the circumstances in which this document was produced?
Clare
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
She had been a Ward. My sister had no children. A copy of this document was handed over by a family friend.
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Hi
Without seeing the Document it is hard to be certain if it is actually a Declaration of Trust - in which case the share does indeed now belong to her Ward.
If it is just an expression of wishes then it is not valid - UNLESS the Ward has acted to her detriment on the basis of the written agreement.
I am sorry that I cannot be more precise but at present it is impossible to be certain
Clare
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you Clare. The document is not a Declaration of Trust. Just a wish by my late Sister.
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
HiThen unless the Ward has acted on the basis of it to her detriment it is not bindingClare