Stopping a house clearance. Need answer fast.

Advice needed within British and specifically English law.
Brief story: my mother died recently. I grew up in her house, and have been a regular visitor there ever since I moved out. I have a lot of personal stuff there. My sister, who has a number of diagnosed mental disorders and hates me, has taken up residence in the house. She has been blocking me from going there to collect my stuff. She has harassed me my entire life, and this is her latest spiteful act.
The executors of the will gave her permission to move in, overruling my objections. Having done so, they have washed their hands of the matter. They told me that I must take it up with the solicitors handling the probate.
I contacted the solicitors, who said they would look into what could be done. It took them a month to reply that they can’t or won’t do anything. Now they have told me that they intend to send in a house clearance firm to remove everything from the house ready for sale. If this happens, I will lose a lot of stuff. I mean irreplaceable personal stuff such as photo albums, and other mementoes of a lifetime.
I pleaded with the solicitor to stop the clearance, but she refused. She intends to go ahead within a few days. I’ve written to her superior at the firm, and I’m waiting for an answer.
In the long term, I’ll need to seek legal advice about getting my sister out of there.
In the short term, I want to stop the house clearance. Can I make some kind of application to the court? What number form do I fill out? How do I get my application heard right away?

Knowing nothing of English law, my opinion is that you need a solicitor of your own whose responsibility is to look after your own interests. The estate’s solicitors do not work for you and have no obligation to look after your personal interest and, as you see, may even be opposed to your personal interests.

I would suggest that you immediately consult with and possibly hire a solicitor of your own.

I intend to, for the bigger question of dealing with my sister. But it’s gonna be expensive,

For the immediate problem of stopping the house clearance, what can I do? Any suggestions?

Why haven’t you gone to get your stuff long before this? If your sister wouldn’t let you, then bring a cop with you to retrieve your property.

Right now, a court is likely to say “If this stuff was so important to you, irreplaceable, why didn’t you take it with you when you moved out? Or make any legal effort to get it since then?”

You need your own solicitor to explain this to a court.

Because I was a frequent visitor to my mother’s house.
It was nice having a lot of my stuff there.

Question: can you prove that it’s “your” stuff?

IANAL, but I think you need one now to bring an action in court to stop the house clearance.

Understand that the solicitor that you have been talking to regards you as a feckless wimp. Sort of like a little gnat that might be an annoyance she can ignore or swat and kill. She and her colleagues are probably chuckling that you think they’re going to help you.

So do you want your stuff or don’t you? If you want your stuff, you gotta pay.

Since she is going to have your stuff destroyed in a few days, time is of the essence. Get to your own solicitor now and get him or her engaged NOW. It may not even require getting a court involved. Your solicitor can call the other solicitor and inform her that you are serious and are prepared to make life hard for her. They may be able to negotiate a delay of a few days during which you can get your stuff out. If not, your solicitor knows what papers to file in court.

If this were the United States, it is unlikely that you could get a full-blown hearing with Perry Mason-style questioning and witnesses breaking down on the stand in the next few days. The best you could hope for would be a temporary restraining order until a hearing can be scheduled.

The executors are personally responsible - and liable - for the estate. It might behove you to remind them of this. That said, you’ve left it a month, so you may be SOL.

But also, if it’s your stuff, then it’s not part of the estate.

I wish you all the best; however if the worse comes to the worst you might be able to find the disposal people * and confidentially get them to sell you your property.
It would cost you in addition to that payment, for garbage people expect fees as lawyers do.

  • Beforehand of course. Although it would be nice if that lawyer and her associates were forced to wade through filth to recover what they wantonly and callously caused to be disposed of.

For many years.

I am a solicitor in the UK and I do practice here but not in wills or probate, and I am not a UK solicitor, so this area is forbidden to me anyway.

Get a solicitor. If the stuff is yours, he might be able to apply for an injunction to stop the sale. This is a court order to stop whatever is happening, so that a situation is preserved whilst the parties negotiate or go to court.

It would be good if you took your solicitor a copy of the will (if one exists), and all correspondence with the executors and your sister’s solicitors. Without knowing more detail this is the best advice I can give.

I would do this without delay.