Will Wars

My friend Samantha just called me in flap, which is nothing too far out of the ordinary. This time, at least, the matter was marginally more interesting than her latest dating disaster. It concerned a slight altercation she’d just had with her elderly neighbour’s nephew regarding his aunt’s last will and testament.

Not knowing a huge amount about the legal world in general, I couldn’t follow the story as closely as I’d have liked. From what I gather, it has something to do with the nephew repeatedly rocking up to hassle his aunt about preparing a will. It seems that Samantha, as the aunt’s next-door neighbour, has become the go-to recipient of arguments contrary to this notion. She has now proceeded to give the nephew a piece of her mind.

The trouble with Samantha giving out pieces of her mind is that they’re quite often ill-informed – in this case, on the general subject of drafting wills. Melbourne readers, have you had incidents such as this in your families? As in, someone refusing to make a will, to the chagrin of other family members? I’m sure it’s not uncommon.

Anyway, Samantha had gotten hold of the notion that the nephew is looking to pick up his aunt’s house, this being something that the neighbour has expressed concern about. From the sound of it, though, that may not be what’s going on. Upon being confronted about it by Samantha, he explained curtly to her that he was intervening on behalf of his aunt’s daughter overseas, who’s concerned about her mother’s general disdain for legal procedures around the distribution of her estate.

That rang a bell for me. When my wealthy uncle passed away and my dad got sucked into that whole nasty business around letters of administration, Melbourne suddenly became a hotspot for various estranged relatives. That was a hassle, if ever I saw one. It really impressed on me the value of having legal matters dealt with professionally. Leaving them hanging doesn’t do anyone too many favours.

I might just leave Samantha to figure this one out on her own.