We couldn’t reach an agreement unless we agreed on their terms 100%
My dad died almost 20 years ago and he left everything to my mother. My step brother was 20 years old at that time and he was in and out of jail. When my mother died last year, she left everything to my brother and I. Unfortunately, my stepbrother was unhappy that he was left out of the will. I think he expected to receive a huge portion of money, but he was estranged from us for most of his life. He tried to fight for some of the estate. He felt that he should be entitled to a third of the money that was left of his father and my mother’s estate. My brother and I were forced to retain an estate lawyer. We were stuck in probate for months and months, while the estate lawyer was buried in paperwork. At one point, the estate lawyer suggested that we offer a settlement to our stepbrother. We were six months into the fight and we were spending an enormous amount of money in court fees. We offered to settle out of court for 60% of the original offer. We couldn’t reach an agreement unless we agreed on their terms 100%. We finally ended up in court last week and the judge took time to listen to both sides. After hearing all of the facts, the judge agreed that my step brother was entitled to exactly 20% of the total estate. That was not the verdict that my step brother wanted to hear, but at least everything is over now and we can finally grieve both of our parents in peace.