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Vineet S
Vineet S,
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 2627
Experience:  Freelance Solicitor at Self Employed
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My cousin passed away 5 years ago I as her cousin was next

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My cousin passed away 5 years ago I as her cousin was next of kin as she had no other blood relative.. I applied to probate and was granted probate as there was no will and the money in her bank account was transferred to me. Now 5 years later a friend of my cousin has sent me a letter via a solicitor stating he had a verbal agreement with me that I would give him the money and if I do not give him a cheque for the money within 30 days he will seek to enforce the agreement and has advised me to seek legal advice. Please can you advice how I stand now. Regards Edith
JA: What documents or supporting evidence do you have?
Customer: I have all my cousins bank statements and letter of probate
JA: Is there anything else the Lawyer should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: no

Welcome to Just Answer, I am a solicitor in England and Wales and I will be dealing with your case today.

Kindly note, I am not available for phone calls at the moment, however I can easily assist you via this online chat.

I will go through your question and will get back to you with my answer shortly.

Meanwhile, please ignore any phone call request pop-up, they get generated automatically without any input from the expert, so I have no control over these requests.

Hi there,

Could you please confirm if this friend had a verbal agreement regarding the money with you or your late cousin?

Customer: replied 9 days ago.
He states he has but I never remember a verbal agreement

So, he is claiming that you entered into a verbal agreement with him regarding sharing the estate of your late cousin?

Customer: replied 9 days ago.

A contract can be verbal, implied or confirmed by the conduct of the parties. There is no requirement to have a contract in writing , though it is highly recommended to get it confirmed in writing ,for avoidance of any doubts in future.

Problem with verbal contracts are that if some party backs out or if there is some confusion regarding the terms , then contract can be treated as complete contract, and would remain unenforceable.

Aggrieved party would have to prove the verbal contract by providing any evidence that such a contract existed, in the form of some witnesses in whose presence such contract was agreed, or any other evidence which confirms that both parties agree to terms of the verbal contract.

Customer: replied 9 days ago.
How should I reply to the solicitor letter requesting all the money whic is £17k thanks

So, it would not be easy for your friend to prove the verbal contract, if it was not acknowledged by you in all those 5 years that he has waited to take action.

Customer: replied 9 days ago.
How should I reply to the solicitor letter or should I reply I could sent you a copy of the letter thanks

Reply back that no such agreement exists, you never entered into any verbal or written contract with your friend regarding it. Ask them to disclose any evidence they are relying on regarding the contract.

Limitation period to recover monies /debt is 6 years from the date when last payment was made or debt last acknowledged.

Customer: replied 9 days ago.
would that be the date I was paid from the bank thanks

It might that this friend might be trying to pull a fast one here, after getting back to you after 5 years regarding a verbal contract.

Yes, if there was any agreement to share the estate, then the limitation period would have started when you received the money.

Customer: replied 9 days ago.
Thank you so much for your advice it’s been really helpful.

You are welcome. Have a nice day & stay safe.

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