Can an adopted child be cut out of their adopted parents’ Will?

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Can an adopted child be cut out of their adopted parents’ Will?

Asked on February 9, 2013 under Estate Planning, North Carolina

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

An adopted child has the same rights to inherit as do biological children; they also have the same rights regarding not inheriting. The fact is that a parent may disinherit their child. As a general rule, children have no right to inherit anything from their parents.

That having been said, most states do have laws to protect against accidental disinheritance. In rare cases, a child may have a right to “elect against the Will” if it appears the parent did not know about a child or if the child was born after the Will was signed (to disinherit these latter children, there must be specific disinheritance language in the Will). Otherwise, if there is a Will and you're not in it, you are not entitled to any of the estate.


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