Can a husband disinherit his wife?

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Can a husband disinherit his wife?

My husband has terminal cancer and has changed our Will. He is leaving everything to our kids. Is there any use in me filing for divorce since he has already transferred the assets or just wait until he dies then sue?

Asked on July 27, 2011 Georgia

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your situation. You need to take the Will to an attorney to review in light of all of your assets.  The general answer is that no, a husband can not disinherit his wife and a wife has a right of election against a Will that tries to do so.   But Georgia, from my understanding, is not the most forthcoming with election rights.  Here is what I understand them to be:

The spouse is entitled to 12 months support and maintenance from the date the estate administration commences. (Section 53-5-2) This time may be extended if the estate administration takes more than 1 year. If the Will makes provisions in lieu of this, then the spouse can make an election to obtain the support allowance. (Section 53-5-5).

Other states allow for a third or so of the net income of the estate.  How are your assets held? Jointly with rights of survivorship I hope.  Then they will go to you upon his death automatically.  Please seek legal help in your area on this.   Good luck.


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