What constitutes the renunciation of an estate?

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What constitutes the renunciation of an estate?

My mother passed recently and she did have a will that split her estate 50/50 between my brother and me. She lived in the same town that he does and prior to her illness and death I was concerned that he was not looking after her properly so I sent him a letter that stated that I would gladly let him have whatever my part of the estate if he would take better care of her. I came to see her as often as possible and she would tell me she never saw him thus the reason for me writing the letter. I never heard from him about the letter and I am not sure anything changed. Would her will override my letter to my brother even though I signed it?

Asked on December 30, 2014 under Estate Planning, Alabama

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

While you can renounce your inheritance, you can't do so prior to the testator (person making the will) passing away and the estate being distributed--i.e. you can't renounce in advance, but only when assets are to be distributed to you. In this case, therefore, you should still inherit.


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