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Clare, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 35087
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practice since 1985 with a wide general experience.
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under uk law, can someone who has been separated plus

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under uk law, can someone who has been separated for 10 plus years make a claim against the husbands estate. This is a wife who left after an affair and she has been living with the man she had the affair for this full time. Now the legal husband who she has not seen for over 10 years has died and she seems to think she can take everything, even though his verbal wishes were for the 2 children to have 1/3 each. He seemed willing for her to have 1 3rd also but certainly not everything.
Thank you for your question.
My name is Clare
I will do my best to help you but I need some further information first.
Did the deceased leave a Will?
How much was his estate worth?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

We believe there was no will? how could we check? She is now clearing out his house. Estate is probably worth only 500,000 pounds.

I am afraid that if there is no Will then his estranged wife is indeed entitled to all his personal belongings, the first £250,000 of his assets and a life interest in half of the remainder
The other half of the remainder goes to the children, as does the first half on the death of the estranged wife.
I am sorry but in the absence of a Will the wishes that the deceased expressed have no force at all.
Please ask if you need further details
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Ok thanks. Can you please clarify with a calculation showing what would go to who and explain what you mean by a life interest in half the remainder. Was the 250k based on 50% or is there some sort of cap in these situations? Thanks, dave

However much the estate is worth all the personal belongings and the first £250,00 of the assets go to the Widow
If the estate is worth less than £250,000 then the Widow gets everything.
Any funds above £250,000 are split in two.
One half of the pot is then distributed immediately between the children.
The other half is invested with the interest going to the widow - and the capital reverting to the children on her death
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thanks. Is there any process to contest this situation, on the basis that she has been out of his life for so long? She was living in a relationship of the nature of a marriage with another man for that entire time.

And just going back to my earlier question, is there a way to check if the deceased had a will - is there a register or similar that law firms use?

No I am afraid there is no way around the Intestacy Laws.
There is no Central Registry of Wills either - although some solicitors use this service
but there is no requirement to do so
The only other option is to phone all local solicitors
Clare and other Law Specialists are ready to help you