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ExperiencedLawyer, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 311
Experience:  I have 14+ years of experience as a family lawyer, advising people on all kinds of relationship and family law issues.
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My Parents have passed away. I am a equal beneficiary in the

Customer Question

My Parents have passed away. I am a equal beneficiary in the estate with 2 brothers. I have not spoken to them in years and I have no idea what is going on. My parents solicitor will not give me a straight answer on anything and I cannot trust either brothers with this in any way. I need to know my rights and what I must do to ensure my parents wishes are executed and they do not destroy my parents wishes. My mothers solicitor has advised me to get my own solicitor.

Please Answer the following with respect to my parents solicitor
Are the following true or not

"Anything I say to my parents solicitor can be used against me in a court of law and that anything my brothers say as executors will be kept in the strictest confidence by my parents solicitor"

They are working for my brothers as executors and not for me. They work in their interests before mine.

It is possible for the executors to change in any way, the instruction for the solicitor to fairly account for and distribute the proceeds themselves
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  ExperiencedLawyer replied 4 years ago.

My name is Mac. I will be able to help you with your three questions.

"Anything I say to..."
This sounds more like a criminal law reference than the division of an estate. There should be no need for court proceedings in this situation, so it should not come up.

"They are working for my brothers as executors and not for me..."
Are your brothers the executors? And not you? To be honest, the answer to that doesn't matter much because of the answer below.

"Is it possible for the executors to change instructions to the disadvantage of a beneficiary?
No, most definitely not. And you will be entitled to a copy of the estate accounts at the end of the process and will be able to see that the estate was divided equally/appropriately.

Overall, it is the answer to that last question which should ensure you are fine at the end of the day, or at least know if you are being shortchanged (and could then ask a court for help). It is highly unlikely the solicitors would do anything not in accordance with the law.

I hope that is helpful. If you would like me to clarify anything, please ask. If not, I would be grateful if you could rate my answer.

Expert:  Clare replied 4 years ago.
For clarity.
Your brothers are the Executors of the Will.
As such they are the only people that the Solicitor can discuss the estate with in any detail at all - hence the vague answers you are getting.
As a beneficiary you have no right to be kept up to date with the practicalities of the administration of the Estate - only to receive your legacy in a reasonable space of time.
In terms of your questions
1. Strictly speaking yes this is correct
2. They are working for the Executors of the Estate who happen to be your brothers. This does NOT mean that they are acting in the interests of your brothers - they are acting for the Estate and will not actin a way that is not covered by the Terms of the Will
3. No they cannot - the Executors can be held personally liable if they do not administer the Estate in accordance with the terms of the Will
Without more information about your actual concerns it is impossible to be certain if this is sufficient reassurance - if you need more information please say
Expert:  ExperiencedLawyer replied 4 years ago.

If I can give you any more clarification, please let me know. Otherwise, we would be very grateful you could rate an answer, (as it's the only way we get paid - sorry to ask). If you don't rate it within two days, then the website company will simply retain the deposit itself.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Sorry for the delay I have been away. Would you then suggest I get my own solicitor to contact the estate solicitor directly?

Expert:  ExperiencedLawyer replied 4 years ago.

Certainly if you have your own solicitor, then he is more likely to get straight answers from the estate solicitor directly than you (although it shouldn't actually be like that, but they'll speak the same language etc).

Either way, ultimately the executors owe a duty of care to all the beneficiaries of the will and if they shortchange you, they are likely to be personally liable for that.