A sister is accusing her brother of taking £1.2 million out of their father’s account before his death.
Charlotte Isenschmid is claiming her brother, Tom Isenschmid, who was chosen to act as executor of the will, took £1.2 million out of their father’s bank accounts before he passed away. Their father, Michael Isenschmid, died in 2017, leaving a £1.5 million estate behind in a will signed on May 2006. Charlotte claims though that the £1.5 million estate, which is mainly related to trusts held in South Africa, is only slightly more than half what was originally left behind.
However, Tom claimed to have found another will signed six months after this leaving him as executor and stating that the trusts should be split between the siblings. This will was never found, but a photocopy of it was accepted as an official document by the court. Charlotte originally disputed the validity of this second will, but last year conceded the will was genuine. Although, she still requested he be replaced as executor of the will due to growing hostility between the two.
Charlotte who represented herself in court said:
“My brother is not capable of dealing with the estate, he’s ruined it. Every single penny my brother is spending he’s taken from my father. He didn’t have any money of his own…He is being arrogant and self-assured with somebody else’s money. £1.2million was taken from my father’s accounts… It’s been so frustrating. I just want justice for my father in the end.”
Aiden Briggs, who acted for Tom, told Deputy Master Marsh, who presided over the case, that:
“Grounds for removal (of her brother as executor) are that he is subject to a conflict of interest because Charlotte challenges various lifetime transactions made from the deceased’s bank account, said to total £1.2million, and the relationship between Charlotte and Tom has broken down irretrievably. The claimant is not afraid of making allegations without having the evidence to back them up and that has exacerbated the acrimony between the parties and the cost of the proceedings.”
Briggs added that Charlotte has decided to change her case as she now lays claim to the entire estate of her father and was “unreasonably combative”. He continued:
“There has been no attempt to narrow the issues or seek any practical solutions in this estate. Rather, she appears determined to wage battle royale on her brother, raising every possible allegation, whether reasonable or not. Charlotte has refused every invitation to mediate this dispute.”
Marsh ordered Tom to be removed as executor of the will to be replaced by a professional executor. The judge also advised the pair to seek a settlement out of court as he concluded:
“The feelings you have about your father’s estate and between both of you are very unfortunate. Continued disputes will lead to you each receiving less from your father’s estate. There might be rights and wrongs that need to be established, but you should think long and hard before starting the next stage.”