If my father’s significant other of 43 years has been accepting government checks for a deceased spouse, Is she still entitled to part of my father’s estate?

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If my father’s significant other of 43 years has been accepting government checks for a deceased spouse, Is she still entitled to part of my father’s estate?

Her spouse was killed while on military duty.

Asked on July 29, 2013 under Estate Planning, Texas

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

If your father leaves a Will, he could leave his significant other his estate or part of it if he decides to do so and has the mental capacity to make that decision.

If your father does NOT leave a Will, the rules of intestate succession determine inheritance.  Intestate means dying without a Will.  The significant other will NOT inherit any of your father's estate under intestate succession because the entire estate would go to the surviving spouse.  There isn't any surviving spouse since your father and significant other are not married.  When there isn't any surviving spouse, the estate is divided equally among the children.  If there is a deceased child who had children (your father's grandchildren), they would receive the share of the estate their deceased parent would have received had that parent survived.


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