Filling out a will during divorce

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Filling out a will during divorce

I am currently going through
a divorce I would like to
will my home all my non
marital property to my
niece, in the event
something were to happened
to me before divorce is
finalized, so my soon to be
ex can’t lay claim to
anything. Do I need to do
anything special as far as
stating in my will whome I
want things to go to?
Should I say anything about
not wanting him to receive

Asked on August 19, 2018 under Estate Planning, Missouri


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Yes, it is good to both very explicitly state who you want to receive your assets (what you leave behind) and also to state that you intend [fill in spouse's name] to receive nothing unless he is required to receive something by law, in which case it is your intention that he receive the smallest amount which the law would give him.  
In MO, like in many states, a spouse can not be completely disinherited: as long as you are married to him (until the divorce is final), he can get 1/2 your estate (if you have no children) or 1/3 your estate (if you do have children). Once the divorce is finalized, he does not have to get anything.

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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