Can I use a trust in Kansas to skip spouse and children?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Can I use a trust in Kansas to skip spouse and children?

I purchased our home with cash shortly after marriage. If I die, I want my wife to be able to live there as long as she likes, but then go to charity on her death, not to her child from previous marriage.

Asked on July 1, 2019 under Estate Planning, Kansas


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

A trust would be one way to do that. Another way would be to use a will and give her a "life estate," or the right to live there for the rest of her life, and a "remainder" interest to someone else, who gets the house on her death. When someone has a life estate, they cannot sell the house or leave it to anyone; it will not be inherited from them, but rather goes to the "remainderman" who has the remainder interest. The remainderman can be a charity.
As for whether a trust or life estate would be better for you, that depends on your exact situation; consult with a trusts and estates attorney.

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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