If I’ve been living separately from my wife for 6 months while our divorce was pending but she passed away, am I still responsible for wrapping up her estate?

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If I’ve been living separately from my wife for 6 months while our divorce was pending but she passed away, am I still responsible for wrapping up her estate?

I do not want any share of her assets and would prefer to not to have any involvement at all. What are my legal rights and responsibilities?

Asked on September 9, 2013 under Estate Planning, Pennsylvania

Answers:

Anne Brady / Law Office of Anne Brady

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

If you wife had a legal will, then whatever the will says must be abided by.  If your wife appointed you as the executor and you do not want to do it, you should hire an attorney to do it for you.  If your wife died without a will then the laws of Pennsylvania for intestate succession will apply, and they vary based on whether you wife also had children.  You can ask the probate court to appoint a trustee to manage this.


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