If a title has both names of a married couple and one of those two passes away, does the item in question automatically become part of the living spouses estate?

Is the item safe from debt collectors of the deceased?

Asked on July 21, 2014 under Estate Planning, Oklahoma


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

1) It does become part of the living spouse's estate.

2) However, it is not safe from the creditors of the deceased. Unsecured creditors they may proceed against the asset to the extent of the deceased's interest (e.g. the interest or share he/she had prior to passing); and secured creditors may reposses or foreclose, as appropriate, if the survinging spouse does not pay any arrears and keep up payments.

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