Can a beneficiary be forced to reveal a possible inheritance?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Can a beneficiary be forced to reveal a possible inheritance?

My soon to be ex is asking me to reveal my father’s assets in order to claim I don’t need maintenance. My father is still alive and I am currently his only beneficiary according to his current will. Is this possible. I live in Wisconsin.

Asked on January 31, 2018 under Family Law, Wisconsin


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

No, they cannot do this, because it is purely hypothetical what, if anything, you might inherit: your father could outlive you; your father could leave most or all to someone else (a charity, a significant other, a caregiver, etc.)--that is, he could change his will anytime  he wants, and a will has *no* effect until the person making it passes away; your father could spend or lose his money (live an extravagant lifestyle; make bad investments; be defrauded; etc.). So there is NO way to know how much, if anything, you will get, or when; but the law does not deal in hypothetical or unprovable situations. So your father's assets (which are not your own) are not relevant and not discoverable.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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