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Bacolod City, PhilippinesWednesday, December 5, 2012

Do they deserve
to get his things?

Dear Tita,

The wife of my brother Art, Thelma (not their real names), left him and took their two kids with her to live with her relatives in Davao. She said she couldn’t stay with Art because he couldn’t support them in the manner she was used to. Art had been laid off when their company went bankrupt and so they had to move to a smaller apartment while cutting down on their monthly budget to make ends meet.

Thelma kept complaining about their situation until, one day, she finally left with their children. I felt so sorry for Art and took him to live with my husband and kids in our house. At first, he was depressed and unhappy at the loss of his family. Gradually, he got over the hurt and found a job. Soon, he met Annie, a pretty co-worker and they fell in love.

Things went very well for them until he was able to buy a house in a nice subdivision and a car. Annie was very good at handling Art’s money and invested it well. Through her expertise, he was able to acquire properties and savings in the bank.

However, Art met a tragic accident on his way home from the office and he died a few days later. Annie was inconsolable as she loved him very much. When Thelma learned of Art’s death, she came with the kids and refused to let Annie attend the wake and burial. She took over and sold everything, leaving nothing for poor Annie, who was the one who helped Art acquire so much. I asked Annie why she didn’t make sure she would have something for herself but she said she never thought things would turn out this way. Even their joint account in the bank was all withdrawn by Thelma the moment she arrived. Now, Annie has been diagnosed with cancer and I really feel bad for her.


Dear Art’s Sister,

It is indeed unfortunate that Annie is left with nothing when she was the one who helped Art when Thelma abandoned him. I can’t imagine why they didn’t make sure Annie would be protected since they knew that under the law, the wife and children inherit the husband’s estate.

Perhaps, you could try to talk to Thelma and tell her about Annie’s situation. Hopefully, she would be moved to share some of Art’s estate with the woman who helped him a lot.



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