Areas of Law / Wills and Probate

My mother died four months ago, supposedly leaving everything to my brother. My family has been trying to get a copy of her will from her solicitor without success: we want to establish whether we have been left anything. Can the solicitor withhold a copy of the will from the family?

Yes. The executor is only obliged to show a copy of the will to “residuary beneficiaries”: those who stand to inherit the bulk of the estate once specific items and cash gifts have been distributed. Once probate has been granted you can inspect the will at the probate office. If it were to turn out that you were left a legacy of some money the executor would be liable to pay you interest on it from a point 12 months after your mother’s death.

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