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JGM, Solicitor
Category: Scots Law
Satisfied Customers: 12180
Experience:  30 years as a practising solicitor.
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Re: Wills and Probate. My mother and father got divorced and

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Re: Wills and Probate. My mother and father got divorced and he re-married a lady called Kate. He died leaving a token amount of money to my sister and I and the rest of his estate to Kate. My sister and i were adults when he died. At his funeral, Kate said that my sister and I would inherit from her when she died. Kate moved from Devon to Scotland and did not tell my sister or I her new address. We found her address via a relative and started to communicate once or twice a year by letter. As I hadn't heard anything from her for over a year, I searched the death register a few weeks ago and found she died in March 2012. I have established via land registry that she had a flat which has been passed to Kate's nephew as the entry shows 'settlement of Will' .Via Registers of Scotland I have tried to establish if I can view the will but they do not have one for her listed and I am advised that if the will did not need to go to court then they wouldn't have a record of it.
My questions are;
Are my sister and I able to view Kate's will somehow?
If my sister and I are not in the will, as Kate's step children, are we entitled to anything if we challenge it?
Thank you.
Hi thanks for your question. Well you can obtain a copy of the will. In Scotland but it is not straight forward and not every will is registered.

If it has been registered then you need to contact the local sheriffs court to where the deceased does or write to XXXXX (27 Chambers Street, EDINBURGH EH1 1LB, tel: 0131(NNN) NNN-NNNN.

However step relations have no right to inherit and if you were not in the will then you have no right at all I am afraid.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thank you for your speedy reply. Registers of Scotland have carried out a 'Deed Name' search on the Judicial Registers but were unable to find an entry for Kate's will. If there is no entry on that register does that mean the will is not available to view or is there another way of getting a copy please?

Additionally, if Kate had made provision for my sister and I in her will, but the executor had stated he had been unable to trace us, would the will be registered somewhere showing there are benefactors outstanding please?

Registers of Scotland is for property registration so I am not sure whether that covers the registration of wills in the Sheriff courts. I would have thought not but I will opt out to see if another expert can give you a clearer answer.

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Customer: replied 4 years ago.


I would like you to try and find a professional in this area of Scottish law please.

Thank you


We will continue to look for a Professional to assist you.

Thank you for your patience,
Customer: replied 4 years ago.


I have not receiveupdate communication. Are you still looking for a professional? If so, how long should I expect to wait please?

Kind regards,


Thank you for your question.

I am a Scottish lawyer and will help you with this.

If Kate died in Scotland and her estate was wound up in Scotland and she left a house in Scotland then Confirmation, which is the Scottish word for probate, would have been required to transfer the house from Kate, via her executor, to the nephew.

Accordingly a copy of the will and the Confirmation will be held at the Sheriff Court in the district in which she died. It is not the case that the will has necessarily been registered in a Edinburgh as that is not required under Scots law, so the Sheriff Court is where you have to look.

As far as the the law of succession is concerned, step children have no automatic rights of succession unless provision is made for them in the will.

Happy to discuss further.

I hope this helps. Please leave a positive response so that I am credited for my time.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thank you for your response which was really helpful. Kate's last known address was a 'care of' address in Hamilton but she died in Hairmeyes Hospital, East Kilbride. I have already been in contact with the Sheriff Court in Hamilton who used a system called CODA (not sure if that's the correct lettering) and could not find an entry for her. Her house was in Glasgow.

Which district would you expect the Confirmation and will to be in please?

i will be leaving a very positive rating - thank you so much for your continued help.


The district would be her last permanent address before she died but as I understand it a CODA search covers all sheriff courts but to be sure you should contact the sheriff clerk commissary clerk at Glasgow.

If that doesn't produce a result you might want to get copies of the deeds used in the nephew's application for registration of his title to see if there is a certificate of confirmation forming part of that application. You may want to contact RoS in this connection or instruct professional searchers such as Millar & Bryce.

I presume the house you are referring to as going to the nephew was in Scotland and that the will was Scottish and that the estate was wound up in Scotland.
JGM, Solicitor
Category: Scots Law
Satisfied Customers: 12180
Experience: 30 years as a practising solicitor.
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