What would happen if I die before my parents' estate is settled? 15 Answers as of August 26, 2015

My father recently passed, and my 2 sisters and I are named the beneficiaries. What if I die before it is all settled? Does my wife have a legal right to my share of the estate?

Ask a Local Attorney. 100% Anonymous. Free Answers.

Free Case Evaluation by a Local Lawyer: Click here
O'Keefe Legal Services, L.L.C.
O'Keefe Legal Services, L.L.C. | Sean P. O'Keefe
In Maryland, the answer may depend on any specific survivorship requirement(s), but in general a bequest to you would pass to your heirs (or legatees if you have a will).
Answer Applies to: Maryland
Replied: 8/26/2015
Law Office of Pamela Braynon | Pamela Y. Braynon
She would unless your father specifically addressed this in his will. Then his will rules.
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 8/24/2015
Attorney At Law | James G. Maguire
Whatever you inherited would pass to your legal heirs, probably not to your wife, You need to make a will.
Answer Applies to: Louisiana
Replied: 8/19/2015
Law Ofices of Edwin K. Niles | Edwin K. Niles
In legal theory, your interest in the estate passes to you upon death, subject to administration. Therefore, you can make a will leaving that interest to whomever you wish.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 8/19/2015
Ronald K. Nims LLC | Ronald K. Nims
It depends on how your parents' wills were written.
Answer Applies to: Ohio
Replied: 8/19/2015
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC | John F Brennan
    Depends on the will but generally if it was or would be your property and pass to your heirs.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/18/2015
    Law Offices of Richard M. Levy P.C.
    Law Offices of Richard M. Levy P.C. | Richard M. Levy
    It would be speeled out in the will. Bring a copy to an attorney for an opinion.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 8/18/2015
    Bunch & Brock, Attorneys-at-Law
    Bunch & Brock, Attorneys-at-Law | W. Thomas Bunch II
    When your father died, his estate "vested" in you and your sisters as beneficiaries. So, if you sign a Last Will that leaves everything you own to your wife, she will receive your share. Some Last Wills require the beneficiaries to survive the deceased by 30 or 60 days, but once you live that amount of time, the inheritance is your property to give to your wife in your Last Will.
    Answer Applies to: Kentucky
    Replied: 8/18/2015
    Minor, Bandonis and Haggerty, P.C.
    Minor, Bandonis and Haggerty, P.C. | Brian Haggerty
    It depends on the terms of your father's will. There is often a requirement that a devisee survive for thirty, sixty, ninety days or even longer. Then, the terms of the will would control what would happen if you did not survive for the required amount of time. If you have survived for the amount of time required, then whatever will come to you through the estate is vested in you now. Your wife has a legal right to your inheritance to the same extent she has a right to anything else you own. Note that Oregon is not a community property state your wife's rights if you die would depend on the terms of your will, or on Oregon's laws regarding intestacy if you have no will. Very rarely, a will might say "X cannot take any share of my estate" and will provide for alternate takers if X is in line for anything. But that would be the case only if your father really, really didn't want your wife to get anything from his estate.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 8/18/2015
    Sebby Law Office
    Sebby Law Office | Jayne Sebby
    Most states have a period of time that Person A must survive Person B by, in order to inherit from Person B. It's usually a pretty short period of time, such as 120 hours. From the facts you provide, you are likely to have already passed that period, in which case your own will would determine who inherits your share of your father's estate.
    Answer Applies to: Nebraska
    Replied: 8/18/2015
    Goldsmith & Guymon
    Goldsmith & Guymon | Dara Goldsmith
    Without knowing what the Will or Trust says it is impossible to say.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 8/18/2015
    Law Offices of George H. Shers | George H. Shers
    It goes to your heirs, at least one of which is your wife.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/18/2015
    Law Office Of Victor Waid
    Law Office Of Victor Waid | Victor Waid
    Your children would receive your share, if you have children; otherwise your share would be returned to your parents, if alive, and if not then to your siblings, unless other instructions were left for distribution of deceased beneficiary share.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/18/2015
    Ashcraft & Ashcraft, Ltd.
    Ashcraft & Ashcraft, Ltd. | Randall C. Romei
    If you are a legatee under your father's will or trust and are alive at the time of his death then the general rule is that your right to the legacy is vested and the legacy will be distributed to your estate in the event you pass away before distribution. Sometimes "alive at the time of death" of the decedent" (your father) is defined as "alive "X" days after the death of the decedent". Furthermore, a legacy may be subject to restrictions and postponement of possession, in which case the terms of the legacy must be reviewed to determine when the right to the legacy vests.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 8/18/2015
    James Oberholtzer, Attorney at Law
    James Oberholtzer, Attorney at Law | James Oberholtzer
    Yes, your heirs receive it. If you have a Will, it will pass by the Will; otherwise it goes to your heirs at law.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 8/18/2015
Click to View More Answers:
12 3 Free Legal QuestionsConnect with a local attorney