Have I been disinherited?

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Following a family argument with her father, Kate is concerned that she will not receive items promised in her mother’s will. Does she have any legal way of finding out if she has been disinherited?

Q. I am 52 and after a disagreement regarding my personal life in June this year, my father told me he was going to disinherit me. He was not very stable at the time and I do not know whether this has improved. I know my mother was very specific in her will as to who should receive certain items of furniture and personal belongings. My father is still living in the family home, and until he passes away, these items will remain with him.

My brother is the executor of my parents’ will and his wife does not like me. My concern is that my father might change his will and exclude me completely, leaving everything to my brother. Am I able to contest this based on the will my parents made before my mother passed away?

How can I find out if my father has in fact changed the will based on an emotional knee-jerk reaction to something he said in the heat of the moment?

I am going to ask my brother for a copy of the will, but am doubtful that he will provide me with it.

A. Legal information provided by Rod Cunich, Slater & Gordon
Kate, unfortunately, if your father and brother refuse to tell you, then there is no legal way of finding out if your father has changed his will. You do fall within the category of eligible beneficiaries who can challenge your father’s will once he passes away, but we cannot speculate on your chances of success.

Before you start worrying about whether you have been disinherited, it may be worth taking the time to try and mend the rift with your father. I understand that you may be hurt and angry about what was said, but four months is a long time not to have spoken to your father, whom I gather is not in the best of health. I also understand that you are keen to ensure you receive the items promised to you by your mother, but surely it’s more important to find out about the health of your father.

Your brother’s wife not liking you has no bearing on whether or not you have contact with your father. This is the most important relationship for you to address, as once he’s gone, you will have missed your chance.

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Total Comments: 5
  1. 0

    Death can bring out the best and worst in family members. Is a piece of furniture really worth more than family relationships? Or is it a case of knowing the worth of something and the value of nothing?

    I say forget about the will and any inheritance. That is only ‘stuff’. Kate already remembers her Mother in ways that are special to Kate (and don’t include her possessions). The real issue here is about the rift with the Father. Perhaps focussing on mending that relationship in whatever time is left regardless of his views on Kate’s personal life would be more beneficial and rewarding in the long run.

    Kate cannot influence the sister-in-law or make her change her opinion. Kate should concentrate on what she can control and that is her own behaviour towards her Father. The ‘stuff’ can wait. There may not be enough time for the relationship with her Father to wait. I can only imagine the regret Kate may feel if her Father were to die and she wasn’t told until it was all over. How would she cope then?

    • 0

      Perhaps Kate need to have a look at herself unless she already knows why her sister in law doesn’t like her and why there was the blow up with her father. Perhaps it is she that needs to change, not them.

    • 0

      Reply to Gra – I couldn’t believe what I was reading. How insulting. The only person who needs ‘to take a look at herself (or himself)’ – is you.

  2. 0

    This is a common case seen in the courts. The first thing you can do is speaking to your father once again. This case is so difficult for you to get succeed. But as you make your father a positive love towards you there are some chances.Beverly Diamonds Scam

  3. 0

    Just been through the same thing….. My parents have disinherited me because I chose to move interstate for work and life style, and wasn’t there ‘ to be a dutiful daughter’. (I am the eldest of 6). Mind you, this was after staying on their rural property till my mid 30’s to help run the place, and I left with a grand payout of $5,000. They refused to visit me, and every time I visited them there was always constant comments about how I ‘was depriving them of seeing their grand children’. Now after both have passed away, I have been quoted MINIMUM $55,000 to contest the will.



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