A family member died. There exist two wills, one of which probably revokes the other - each was written in a separate jurisdiction (England, and Ireland). The solicitor of the later will is unwilling to release it to us. What are our next steps?
My father died unexpectedly nearly 6 months ago. The majority of his estate is in England, which is where he was resident and domiciled. A small part - land and a bank account - was in Ireland, where he has family connections.
His English solicitor drew up a will in England for him once his divorce was finalised. It leaves all his estate to be split equally between his children, with three of us named as executors. Later, when he acquired the Irish property his Irish solicitor drew up a will for him in Ireland. It leaves all his estate to be split equally between his children, with two of us named as executors.
The Irish will has the phrase 'revoking all other wills and testamentary depositions at anytime heretofore made by me'. When I explained this to the probate people in England, they said that probably means that it revokes the English will and so we must use the Irish will for probate in England and in Ireland (it doesn't matter on the order). The Irish court system says that we can apply for probate in Ireland using the grant of probate in England.
So we want to do that.
The complication is that dad's Irish solicitor is essentially refusing to release the will to us, the executors. They believe that it only applies to the part of the estate in Ireland, although there is nothing in the will that makes any reference to only applying to one country.
WTF do we do now? We have a copy of the Irish will (not good enough for probate). We have the original of the English will. We want to apply for probate asap. How can we definitively work out which will is valid where? Do we need to speak to an English solicitor, an(other) Irish solicitor, or both? Do we need a specialist type of solicitor? Can we insist that as executors we receive the will?
Aside from not having the Irish will, we are ready to apply for probate.