Her estate should have passed in accordance with the intestacy rules in the following way:-
- Estate goes to parents.
- If none, then to siblings of the whole blood or their issue.
- If none, then to siblings of the half blood or their issue.
- If none, then to grandparents.
- If none, then to uncles and aunts of the whole blood or their issue.
- If none, then to uncles and aunts of the half blood or their issue.
- If there are no parents, siblings (whole or half blood), issue of siblings, grandparents, uncles and aunts (whole or half blood), or issue of uncles or aunts, estate goes to the Crown (or to the Duchy of Lancaster or the Duke of Cornwall).
If she was the sole registered proprietor of the property then the property should have been included in their estate. The rightful inheritors of the estate would still be entitled to the property now I'm afraid, unless your late husband is proved to have acquired an interest in the property. Presumably this is why he registered a caution against the property.
If your husband was not married to his partner then he could have acquired an interest in the property by either contributing to the directly to the mortgage or in rent payments to her more than he otherwise would have had to pay in private rented accommodation OR by paying for improvements to the property which substantially increased the value of the property. If you are the executor of his estate then you would be able to make a claim in his place, but it would be defended by the person(s) who should have inherited his previous partner's estate (including the property)
You really need to get some specific advice on this because it's quite an unusual situation. I would take the documents you have to a local probate solicitor for a consultation. I would caution though that it might not be easy or quick.
When attending I would also ask about adverse possession. If you have been occupying the property in excess of 10 years and it is registered you may be eligible to make a claim to have it registered in your sole name. This may be a more viable way forward than the above but, as I say, i would see a solicitor for a consultation for a fixed pre-agreed fee.
Sorry it could not be better news.
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