How do I will my son property then to my grandson without my sons wife getting anything?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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How do I will my son property then to my grandson without my sons wife getting anything?

I want to go ahead and give my son
a dead to property and see that
when he dies it will go to my
grandson and not my sons wife.

Asked on May 12, 2016 under Estate Planning, North Carolina


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

If you will it to him and you pass away first, then him, his property will go to whomever he leaves it to or otherwise inherits (e.g. under intestate succession) on his death, which will presumably be his wife. You can't control what he does with property he fully owns. But an easy way around this is to give your son a life estate in the property, while leaving the "remainder" interest to your grandson. This means that your son has the right to live in, rent out, use, etc. the property while he's alive--but your grandson gets it when he passes. This bypasses the problem identified above, since it's not that your grandson inherits when his father (your son) passes away, it's that your grandson inherits his interest on *your* death--just that he can't make use of or do anything with the interest until your son passes. And while your son gets the use, etc. of the property while he is alive, his interest is *only* for his life: he can't will, give away, etc. the grandson's interest, because your son has no rights to what happens to the property after his death.

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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