Unmarried & hassle with life assurance/pensions

Hi
I’m 12 weeks in from losing my fiance of 16 years. We never got round to getting married or writing a will and he died unexpectedly age 57!
I was responsible for sorting funeral and all his private life as we lived together as man and wife for 16 years however … I am not a widow or even a next of kin legally!!! So I’m having to more or less beg n have to prove our 16 years of JP my finances to be considered for his work life assurance and pensions. There’s an estranged 40 year old son of his who thinks he should have everything and this is the delay in discretionary decisions being made! Does anyone have any experience of this good or bad they can share? Thanks

Hello. I’m so sorry for what you are having to go through as if losing your man isn’t enough. I don’t have any experience with regards your problem but I just wanted to let you know that you’re not alone, that we are here and we care. I hope you can continue to find the strength to fight for what is yours, for what you and your partner built together. It defines who you are and what you had. Unfortunately, death can often bring some uglies out of the woodwork. My heart goes out to you and know that we’re here. Keep reading and chatting on this site. Maybe write your problem on another category also. Stay strong and much love to you xx

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I can’t really help but I can sympathise. My partner, Michael, passed away in February. He did leave everything to me but 8 months later it still isn’t sorted. We were together for 41 years but apparently that doesn’t count for anything, even though he did have a Will. He has two estranged adult children who haven’t ever acknowledged my existence and that has complicated the issue for me, too.

Awful that even with a will, decisions can be made against the deceased wishes. Even worse that people fight the decision of the person they (should have) loved.
3 months today for me and no decisions yet made.
x

Hi only me 1

Really sorry to hear of your loss and that you’re going through this when you should be just concentrating on yourself and grieving I’m 18 months down the line after losing my fiance he was diagnosed with a brain tumor he died within 32 days of that diagnosis I really get where you’re coming from I’m not classed as a widow yet I consider myself every inch of widow I believe I’ve grieved as much as anybody else who is married by law ,we were due to be married 3 weeks after he passed away and I’ve had to fight for everything as well slightly more fortunately than you that he signed a will just before he passed away but I still had to fight for the work pension prove everything all the time explained time and time again my situation I think it’s really unreasonable in this 21st century that you can be with somebody for the long as we were and still not be classed as anything wasn’t allowed to sign his death certificate had to also prove that we lived together for nearly 12 years been in a relationship for much longer all I can say is just keep battling on it’s hard but I’m at 18 months on now and it does get a little bit easier I really hope that the court sees in your favour I personally believe that the whole marriage divorce widowed scenarios need to be completely overhauled in this country I was made to feel like a piece of nothing when I was told I couldn’t sign the death certificate and that everything we had together was just had no value at all
All I can say is just keep fighting knowing in your heart what he would have wanted take care yourself

Thank you and sorry for your loss.
I’m really frustrated at having to prove we lived together 16 years and even with the proof having more questions almost like they are trying to find a reason not to pay me. Stupid questions like: although the bills were in his name, did he actually pay the bills from his bank account? Did he pay for household items or household maintenance. Did he pay for holidays …I could scream. We’ve been together longer than some married couples and like you say, can do without the hassle of it all. I am his widow in my eyes. X

We are and no-one can take the memories away … its taken me tablets and physiotherapy … For me I ditched the tablets but physiotherapy had been a benifit but it took me 14 months before i decided to try…when stu passed I didn’t see the point of it or anything but eventually i realised i needed help probably like most of us widows we had our life mapped out he was only 54 ( and because this crap happens to others ) but I came to realise i have to completly re plan my whole life … and i finally think i’m making progress as you will … a saying i saw recently
You don’t know how strong you are until you have to be … xx

That’s so true. I’m 53, he was 57. X

Can definitely relate to the death certificate problems. I explained to the Registrar who I was and how long we’d been together and she said the best she could do was put me down as ‘present at death’ and that really hurt. It was as though 41 years counted for nothing. The only good fortune I had was that both his and my name were on the house deeds and we had a joint bank account. Otherwise, after 8 months, I’d be flat broke as I don’t work - he never wanted me to. I also don’t qualify for his works’ pension. Now I’m stuck in limbo because I’m too old to get a job but not old enough to claim the state pension.

Lord I hate this. Every time I think I’m finally getting on top of things something else goes wrong. Sometimes the stress is just too much and I spend all day crying and I’ve accrued a whole pile of medical problems that I never had before.

Dear Onlyme1,
So sorry for your loss.
My partner of 42 years died suddenly, two years ago. Because we hadn’t made will I’m afraid her brothers ( who hadn’t spoken to her for 15 years, even when she was fighting cancer ) came wading in and took the lot. There is no protection for people like us I’m afraid. I just pray Karma does her work. Thinking of you. L

Wow, it’s so wrong x

Maggie
It is really bad and you lived longer with your partner than most marriages last but you say you wasn’t entitled to his pension was it a work pension ?? I would look further and get advise if you haven’t already …my financial adviser said i should put a case in with Stu’s work pension … because a lady a few years back fought for her partners pension and won a land mark case … I put everything I could to prove our living together … I get a dependant pension now from his work pension … and although i am grateful for this if stu had survived a few weeks more we would have been married and that piece of paper would have given me a full widows pension and the ability to sign the death cert and to be a legally a widow … its not the money but the principle of it … you should not need to get married to prove you were together its just wrong in todays society …

Just to clear up one point in my reply earlier I meant psychotherapy not physiotherapy
X

Hi Onlyme1,
I replied yesterday, telling you my partners family took everything. Well, they did take all of her savings which was more than her pension. Her employers dealt with the pension. There is a panel of trustees ( ??) and they awarded her pension to me. I should’ve made that clear. Take it further. Thinking of you. L

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Yes that’s happening. The trustees of each pension company have to make a decision. I’ve had to provide lots of evidence proving we were together. The estranged adult son …aged 40 … Is the other side of this. Not a nice person … his dad’s view of him was that he only wants money, do he’s going to do everything he can to try to obtain these pensions. I can’t believe how long it all takes.

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I too had that experience, Together for 34 years and I get no acknowledgement, no widow’s pension nothing. Our life together never happened or so the authorities would have it. Which is devastating

Isn’t it heartbreaking. Can’t even tick widowed on a form! Awful that they work Thier whole life and state pension is just lost. The law needs changing. x

Hello. With regards state pension, there isn’t a widow’s pension as such. I received a lump sum of £2500 and then I receive £100 per month for 18 months only. It’s better than nothing but nowhere near enough when you think that my husband worked all his life upto the age of 65. He had only been retired 2 months when he died so hardly had any of his state pension. The government wins again! As for ticking the widow’s box on forms, I understand your feelings but actually I hate ticking that damn box - as far as I’m concerned I’m still married. Bless you all and I wish you luck with your battles. Much love xx

I wish I could tick it as it’s harder being treated as a nobody because we chose not to marry. 16 years together… He was 57 and worked all his life so all he paid in for a state pension is lost. As we were not married I don’t get that bereavement payment or the weekly payment either.

Onlyme1
I actually do tick the widows box … because i don’t want to be single ,we’re not seperated by choice and we didn’t quite get to be married … excuse my french but sod em …
Ps except insurance because they’l use anything against you not to pay out … hang in there … break it down to small portions and just a little each day its easier than looking at the whole thing … I still have what I call duvet days when i can’t and don’t want cope with the world so i have a stay in bed / house me day … use to feel bad about them but have come to see them as a necessity … although since I got my Goldy he doesn’t allow them for to long x

Onlyme1
I actually do tick the widows box … because i don’t want to be single ,we’re not seperated by choice and we didn’t quite get to be married … excuse my french but sod em …
Ps except insurance because they’l use anything against you not to pay out … hang in there … break it down to small portions and just a little each day its easier than looking at the whole thing … I still have what I call duvet days when i can’t and don’t want cope with the world so i have a stay in bed / house me day … use to feel bad about them but have come to see them as a necessity … although since I got my Goldy he doesn’t allow them for to long x

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