Can a probate judge overturn the beneficiary of a life insurance policy?

UPDATED: Feb 21, 2012

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Can a probate judge overturn the beneficiary of a life insurance policy?

I am the only beneficiary and paid for the funeral with the life insurance, in return it was refunded to me through the estate. My siblings are taking it to probate court and insisting that the life insurance was strictly for the funeral and should not have been paid back to me.

Asked on February 21, 2012 under Estate Planning, Pennsylvania


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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Although all the facts have to be looked at in order to determine how this will play out, on the outset and from what you have said, I believe that you should come out on top in this fight.  The funeral bill is thee most important debt in a decedent;s estate.  it takes precedence over the payment of any other bill.  Now, the life insurance proceeds were obviously passed to you via a beneficiary designation by your parent.  That money was yours and yours alone and pass "outside the Will."  You were entitled to reimbursement.  Now, if your siblings want to challenge the designation that is a different story.  Seek legal help.  Good lukc.

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