Answer to a question from a reader

Is my sister the only one allowed to benefit from my father's inheritance?

The short answer

Yes, if she is the sole beneficiary of your father's will.

The whole question

My father had an RDP house and he died 2018. My sister is claiming that the house belongs to her alone. My father put her as the beneficiary. Is she the only one to benefit from the house or are we all entitled to benefit?

The long answer

Thank you for your email asking whether all the siblings are entitled to benefit from your late father’s RDP house, or only your sister whom your father named as the beneficiary.

If your father left a valid will, the common law and the Wills Act both say that his assets must be distributed in the way that his will indicates. So if the RDP house was specifically left to your sister that would seem to be what your father wanted. The house is then known as her legacy.

It is only where a person dies without leaving a will that the assets are divided amongst the surviving siblings.

Answered on Jan. 27, 2020, 10:38 a.m.

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