The niece and sister of a widow who passed away have won £825,000, following allegations that the estate was rigged to be received instead by her brother.

In 2016, Shirley Guymer died aged 78, but just two months previously had altered her will leaving her home in Hampshire to Terry Crook, along with his sons Andrew and Malcolm. Until the new amendment, Guymer’s will had divided 95% of her fortune estimated at £825,000 between all 11 of her nephews and nieces, the issue of her five siblings.

Diane Stoner, Guymer’s sister, along with Karen Reeve, her niece, accused Crook of foul play when hearing of the last-minute change in will. However, the court battle was suddenly halted recently by Crook and his sons who admitted the house should not be left to them.

The original will, written in 2015 will now prevail instead of the current edition that favours Crook and his sons. This move has been backed by Reeve, Stoner and the rest of Guymer’s surviving extended family and is due to be pronounced by lawyers as the widow’s final will.

Guymer’s niece Reeve commented after the London hearing reached its conclusion.

‘We are absolutely delighted with the outcome and that Shirley’s wishes will be carried out.”

Despite six days in court hearing evidence against Crook and his sons, presiding Judge Robin Hollington QC did not announce a ruling regarding the allegations.

Creating a will with the assistance of a professional solicitor is always the best policy to avoid any complications with inheritance.

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