A farmer's daughter has successfully sued her brothers after being written out of £9million of family money by her dad's 'sexist' will - and now the brothers are facing a £1million legal bill.

Julie Mate (62), who is originally from West Yorkshire, took her brothers, Andrew and Robert Mate, to court under English law after the pair were handed the entirety of their parents' dairy farm in Netherton, near Huddersfield.

Julie, who now lives in north Shropshire, said she was 'devastated and dumbfounded' when her dad, Donald Mate, died in 1992 and left his share of the farm to his wife, Shirley, and two sons, with Shirley, now 89, later also giving her share to the boys.

She complained she and her two sisters – who got £36,000 between them in the will – were the victims of old-fashioned sexist tradition, with 'us girls left next to nowt' for years of graft.

She did not challenge the will, but last week won a £652,000 payout from her brothers' fortune after a judge found it was her work in moving some of the farm's land from a Green Belt designation so it could be sold to developers that allowed the brothers to pocket £9m.

Now, the judge ordered the two brothers to pick up the vast majority of the legal bill for the case because they refused to settle out of court. Judge Andrew Sutcliffe KC said in the High Court, recently, that the brothers would have to pay 75% of Julie's lawyers' bills – estimated at about £500,000 – with about £269,000 up front, pending a full assessment.

On top of their own lawyers' bills, it means the pair are set to have to fork out more than £1million.

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In making the order, the judge said: "There can be no doubt that Julie was the successful party."

He said the assessment of the brothers' bill would be done on the punishing 'indemnity' basis after last September, because they had rejected an offer by Julie to settle the case for £650,000.

"In view of the fact that Robert and Andrew's acceptance of Julie's offer would have resulted in there being no trial, it is appropriate that they should be required to pay Julie's costs of the indemnity basis from September 6, 2022 onwards," he said.

He ordered them to pay £268,993.83 up front, representing half of Julie's costs up to September 5, and 65% after that, pending a full assessment.