Mon | Jan 22, 2018

Dear counsellor: Losing sleep over dad's Will

Published:Tuesday | April 12, 2016 | 12:00 AM

Q: I am an outside child for my father and because of that, he did not take good care of me when I was growing up. He had to hide and send money for me because of his wife. Naturally, he did not spend any time with me.

However, fortunes were reversed in my adult life. His business failed and his wife died subsequently. There was also one daughter from that union. I am a businesswoman and I helped my father back on his feet. I bought a small business for him and also an apartment. He is now comfortable. His daughter, who was born in wedlock, has never helped him financially or taken him to the doctor when he was sick.

Nevertheless, she is visiting often in his old age when his mind is not very sharp. In fact, she has crafted a will and got him to sign it. In the will, he has left everything for her. I do not think this is fair. It is not that I need anything, but since it is my money which bought the business and dwelling, I expected he would leave everything for me. I am not sleeping well over this issue. What should I do?

A: You are to be commended for taking care of your father although he did not do a good job of caring and nurturing you. Since you gave him the business and a house, then he can give it to whomever he wants. If you did not want it that way, you should have bought the house in your name and allowed him to live there. The same thing could have been done with the business.

You have done a good deed, even if it is not returned. Do not spoil it by losing any sleep over it. Do not fight over legacy. Just let go of these possessions and enjoy your life and what you have accomplished. Worry will not solve this issue. Just learn from this incident.

However, if you think your sister is using duress on your father to get the business and house, then you should get a lawyer to advise you and him concerning the will. In addition, you can talk with your father and tell him what your expectations are.