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Possible Estate Fraud


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I grow up with my dad with three sisters. I was 9years old when my mother left, the youngest was about 2years.

My dad never introduced anyone just brought women home believing to be minder over the years. When I was 18 I came home from the college to see a pregnant Woman in the house.

Dad did not introduce this lady and we never asked but assumed to be another girlfriend. Then she had child no2,3,4,5 plus bringing other children from previous relationship eleven in all. Then started to address herself as Mrs My Dad name. I had no idea they were married.

 

My dad died aged 90 in 2015 and in his will dated 2010 he stated that his United Kingdom property should be family home not to be sold, but a search revealed that the property lease was extended in 2007 and my father’s last will &testament was signed 2010 indicating his house in the uk not to be sold but for family holiday use.

 

My half-brother was just 30years old never had a job all his life he years he grew in the house.

   His mother my step- mother now claim the flat belong to her. Never contested the will. Two years ago my step mother rang to say that she sold the flat but failed to say how much but I searched and found out the house was sold in millions.

 

I sought several help and advice but was told the owner of the proper is now my brother from the Land registry information.

 

Where do i go from here? Tis is fraud. I feel my father old age and ill health was taken advantage off to benefit my half-brother and his sisters by my stepmother. The transfer of the lease was contrary to my fathers will.

 

 I did not believed that my father was married to her legally but from our culture she bears my father's name.

My step-mother failed accountability of my father assets in United Kingdom and Europe. What do I do to bring my step-brother and his mother ‘ my step mother’ to justice

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I. The undermentioned are my wife and children: 10 names

2.I charge my personal estate with the payment of my debts, my funeral expenses and legacies and annuities bequeathed by this will or any codicil

3. In furterance of this charge, I direct my wife to take much funds as may be necessary for my funeral expenses from the account in our joint name at Mickeymouse Bank

4. I direct my wife to transfer and merge this account with account I hereby directed to be created by the trustee.

5. I thereby declare the following as my real and personal Property: 2 houses and One holiday home in United Kingdom, investment and money in UK and european banks and my country home bank.

6. Equities, Insurances, Trust Funds

7. I give and devise to my wife for her lifetime and thereafteras as further directed in this will: all my property inclusing UK property.

8. I give all my children all my benefial interest in the said properties and the holiday property in the United Kingdom after the death of my wife

8, This is also subject to the proviso that these houses shall be always refered to as “Family Houses"(in this context my children and their offspring etc) each according to the true meaning and the interpretation of that expression under in or by native Law and custom. Provided however, that this interpretation only mean my nuclear family as opposed to the extended family.

9. I charge and direct the trustees or their appointed agents to carry out the lettings of ----- in order to fetch money

10. I give the following legacies to my wife cash sum of money in 2.5milloon in my country currency and to every all my children including my step children(11) and four charity organisations one million each in my country currency.

11. It is my desire and I hereby declare the company shall continue to run from generation to generation by the member of the family.

12. As family business it is my desire and I hereby declare that my wife shall succeed me as chairman for her lifetime and thereafter my Trustee. Trustee company ltd limited shall assume role of chairman.

12. I hereby declare all my children shall be made directors and take their respective seats on the board for the purpose of taking decisions and formulating policies for the family business.

13To treat the share of any beneficiary or child of mine that dies in my life time or before the period of distribution, as lapsed unless there is an issue or grad-issue living at my death or at the period of distribution, such issue or grand-issue shall stand in the place of such deceased child and take per stripes and equally between them if more than one, the share of my estate which such deceased child would have taken if he or she had survived me or living at the period of distribution ;in the absent of such issue or grand-issue, such share shall lapse.

14. To distribute equally and equitably as possible all my personal chattels

14 To assume my role as majority shareholder of my company private/family whose shareholder include my wife and all my chidren except as chairman during the lifetime of my wife.

15. To only be liable as a result of their own fraud or dishonesty and not for any loss to my Estate

16. I hereby charge and direct that under no circumstance should any of the the devices and bequest in this my will be challenged by any of the beneficiaries or be made the subject of any litigation; otherwise any beneficiary who challenges them shall forfeit his or interest under this my will.

17.

 

Witnessed by the testator: 2010

 

 

Certified true copy dated 2015 (Not UK probate Office)

 

 

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There are 2 types of “interest” (“ownership”).

”Legal” and “beneficial”.

 

The legal ownership is what is recorded at the land registry, and is usually one or two persons, who hold the property as sole (if one person) or  ‘joint tenancy’ if more than one.

 

There can then also be a beneficial (also know as equitable) interest in the property.

this can be held by the beneficiaries under joint tenancy or a “tenancy in common”, (and it is often held as the latter, so that it can pass to the successors of the beneficiary, which doesn’t happen with the legal title.

 

However, if there is a beneficial interest, the holder of the legal title does so as a trustee for those who have the beneficial interest.

So, if probate was granted in the U.K. your stepbrother may hold the legal title, but does so as a trustee for the beneficiaries, and owes them the fiduciary duties of a trustee.


I give all my children all my benefial interest in the said properties and the holiday property in the United Kingdom after the death of my wife”

 

So his wife held the legal title while she lived (is she still alive?), but she holds that legal title as trustee to the later beneficiaries.

Edited by BazzaS
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If the property was sold contrary to the wishes / interests of the holders of the beneficial interest : they would potentially have a claim against the trustee.

Has the “Family home” been sold, and if so have the holders of the beneficial interests received any benefit?

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The probate was not granted in the UK But the name of my brother appeared at the land registry as the legal owner contrary to father's will as he maintained ownership

Yes the property in uk was sold , contrary to the wishes, and without my  knowledge neither did i received benefit from it.

Should take a claim against both my brother, my stepmother? to explain why property was sold and where the proceed has gone? 

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The Will you quoted appears to have been drawn up under the laws of another country ('home country') and Probate granted in 'home country'. is that the situation?

 

Was a separate Will for the UK assets drawn up English law?

 

I think that legally this will be a very complex matter.

 

You say the UK house was registered at the Land Registry in your brother's name. When was it registered in his name? The land Registry entry should show that.

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It looks like the house was already registered in your brother's name by 2007, before your father's Will was signed. More importantly for your question that suggests that the house wasn't owned by your father when he died in 2015. If that's true then what the Will said is not relevant. It wasn't his house at the time to his death to do anything with.

 

That's just a guess from me though because I don't know what you mean by "The lease was renewed in my brother's name in 2007". What lease? Do you mean it was a Leasehold property?  

 

If it was just a normal short term Landlord and Tenant Lease the tenant wouldn't have been registered at the Land Registry. The owner would have been.

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