A woman took to Reddit recently to ask if she was in the wrong for causing some family drama. Her husband had asked his grandfather to hand his company down to him instead of his father.
Due to Inherit the Family Business
She always thought that the family business her husband, Peter, worked at would be passed down to him, given that he worked hard for the company and made it profitable again.
Her Husband Is Passionate About His Job
Peter is passionate about his job, which is working as a mechanic for the family business that his grandfather, Big J, built.
Her husband started working at the company when he was 18 years old, and he has worked his way up to become the service foreman.
Turned the Business Around
Over the past three years, he has managed to turn the business around from barely staying afloat to needing to hire more mechanics with all the new clients they’ve brought in.
Peter’s passion for the business is such that he puts in at least 60 hours of work every week, and he looks forward to owning the company one day and passing it down to their children.
Not Everyone Is Passionate
However, Peter’s father, John, the current general manager of the family business, does not share Peter’s passion for the business.
To him, the company is just a job he’ll inherit from Big J when he passes away and which he would inevitably sell.
John has no knowledge of how to service the vehicles, so all he runs currently are the business ends of things like phone calls, service write-ups, scheduling, and so on.
For about four months out of the year, he travels, so Peter runs the company solo when he is not there.
Plans for the Money
Peter’s parents have talked extensively about selling the grandfather’s business the minute Big J passes so that they can take the money and move to a big house down south, thus robbing Peter of inheriting the business he worked so hard to improve!
So a few months ago, when Big J came up to visit, Peter sat him down to break the news to him that his fatehr doesn’t want to keep the company in the family to pass on for generations.
Big J was devastated to hear this.
Changing the Will
Peter suggested putting their names into the will so that it skips John and goes directly to him to keep it alive and in the family he loves so dearly.
And Big J did just that.
A Furious Reaction
A few days ago, Peter’s parents found out about this, and they are LIVID.
They said that Peter and his wife are greedy for what is theirs by birthright and that John had been working there for forty years as opposed to Peter’s less than ten years, so he’d earned it.
Nobody Else’s Business
They said that they had no business going over their heads just because they didn’t like what they were going to do with the shop and that it was none of their business.
It had always been set aside for them in the will, and the parents are saying that they should be disgusted with themselves for ruining their retirement.
Peter is now asking whether he is in the wrong. His wife doesn’t believe that Peter is in the wrong because John was still in the will; he just isn’t getting the company.
Big J is very wealthy and owns multiple vacation properties in the US.
Her in-laws are definitely getting a sizable amount of money as John is Big J’s only son.
Best to Bypass His Son
Big J didn’t disown John, he loves him very much, but he wants his life’s achievement to live on beyond his passing!
He thinks the best way to have that legacy is through his grandson, her husband.
Left High & Dry
The poster’s in-laws won’t be left high and dry; they just won’t be able to have it all – like they currently want.
Her mother-in-law’s main argument is that John gave up his whole life to work for Big J and doesn’t even get to do what he wants with the business.
Who’s Being Greedy?
But Peter’s wife thinks that he could’ve worked anywhere else if he wanted to.
She understands feeling obligated to do something because of family guilt, but no one forced him to work there for 40 years.
Peter and his wife are not being greedy, and they are not ruining anyone’s retirement.
They want to keep the family business alive and pass it down to their children, like Big J wanted to.
A Question of Trust
She also wrote that Big J trusted Peter’s word more than John’s, which spoke volumes about their relationship.
She believed that if Big J thought giving the company to his grandson was bad for business, he wouldn’t have done it.
The Internet Responds
Reddit users agreed with Peter and his wife.
One said, “You and your husband openly communicated with the person whose choice it was to hand down the business and they changed their mind. They just feel entitled to owning it because of seniority and the underlining expectation that they would always receive it once he passed.”
What do you think about this story? Is this couple in the wrong for going over their in-laws’ heads? Or is John wrong for not wanting to keep the family business in the family?
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Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / Emma Dumitrescu. The people shown in the images are for illustrative purposes only, not the actual people featured in the story.