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54 votes
Accepted

How to protect assets from being passed to a beneficiary in a will when they are likely to die soon also

Wills typically handle this by specifying a survivorship period. Such a clause may say, in effect, "I leave all my assets to my spouse, provided they survive me by at least 30 days, and otherwise to ...
Nate Eldredge's user avatar
39 votes

Release my children from my debts at the time of my death

united-states Upon my death how do I physically write the actual release of debt without an attorney, so my children are not held responsible for my debts. You should hire an attorney for a few ...
ohwilleke's user avatar
  • 206k
35 votes

What happens when a will conflicts with a new law (a law made after the testator has died)?

The will is overridden by the new law. Suppose the owner had not died: then he would have to comply with the change in the law. When a person inherits property, they gain the right to that property ...
user6726's user avatar
  • 215k
25 votes

What happens when a will conflicts with a new law (a law made after the testator has died)?

When there is "dead hand" control of something, the people living in the present have to comply with the law (although some land use regulations and some tax treatments are indeed ...
ohwilleke's user avatar
  • 206k
24 votes

Release my children from my debts at the time of my death

Not possible in germany To not inherit a debt in Germany, the heir has to declare to the state that they don't want to inherit this inheritance. This also excludes them from inheriting anything else ...
Trish's user avatar
  • 37.3k
22 votes
Accepted

Which grandchild is older, if one was born chronologically earlier but on a later calendar date due to timezones?

As you have stated, Alice was born two hours prior to Bob. In a will, "eldest" or "oldest" typically is equated with "first-born" (see Daniel N. Mattarlin, "A Simple ...
Jen's user avatar
  • 51.5k
19 votes
Accepted

Should I get a PO box for a will / transfer on death deed?

The address given is assumed to be the one you had at the time. Even if that is not your current address upon your father's death, it still serves an important purpose: It allows you to be ...
ohwilleke's user avatar
  • 206k
18 votes
Accepted

What happens to debts when someone dies?

In Civil law jurisdictions, the heir of a deceased person will generally inherit all the possessions, rights and obligations - this may include debts. So if a borrower passes away, the lender will ...
sleske's user avatar
  • 8,075
16 votes
Accepted

When an American citizen dies in Mexico without a will, which countries' probate law applies?

The default choice of law rule is that intestate succession is governed by the law of the place of domicile of the decedent at death (i.e. by the law of the state where someone resides in the U.S. in ...
ohwilleke's user avatar
  • 206k
14 votes

What options are there for executor when no close family member is available?

Often one chooses your accountant, your financial advisor, or your lawyer. Another option is to appoint the trust department of a bank. I personally, as a lawyer, have a policy of not consenting to do ...
ohwilleke's user avatar
  • 206k
13 votes
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Meaning of 'Gift of Residue' section of a will

What does this paragraph mean? Line by line. I give my Residuary Estate This is a gift, effective when the person writing the Will dies, of everything that is left over after all debts and taxes are ...
ohwilleke's user avatar
  • 206k
12 votes
Accepted

Are holographic wills really routinely thrown out by probate courts?

The page "States Where Holographic Wills Are Legal" from legal zoom lists some 26 united-states states in which holographic wills are valid, plus 9 more that will recognize such wills when ...
David Siegel's user avatar
12 votes

Release my children from my debts at the time of my death

In the united-states this happens automatically. Heirs are not responsible for the "debts of the father", unless they willingly co-signed or something really weird is going on. They just ...
Harper - Reinstate Monica's user avatar
11 votes

Children and grandchildren must be explicitly disinherited in wills?

Yes that seems to be the case. The section after the one you quoted, 551:11 Share of Unnamed Child says: If the property not devised nor bequeathed shall be insufficient to satisfy the just share of ...
David Siegel's user avatar
11 votes

Release my children from my debts at the time of my death

The heirs must use the proper way in spain. As in (almost?) everywhere else, debts are part of the estate and your heirs cannot accept your assets without accepting your debts. But they can accept the ...
SJuan76's user avatar
  • 5,859
9 votes

Does my will need to be in legalese?

Legalese is not required You can and should write a will in plain English. However, you need to ensure that your simple wishes can: Actually be understood, Actually be implemented, Don't have ...
Dale M's user avatar
  • 205k
8 votes

How complex can a will or testament be?

A Last Will and Testament can be very complex. The longest and most complex one that I have drafted runs to about eighty pages. I've seen some in probate proceedings that run to about 120 pages, with ...
ohwilleke's user avatar
  • 206k
8 votes

Is a will provision naming "my wife" as a beneficiary before marriage valid?

united-states Under U.S. law, the primary consideration then and now, in the interpretation of Wills is the intent of the testator (i.e. the person who drafted the Will who is now the decedent). I ...
ohwilleke's user avatar
  • 206k
8 votes

Is a will provision naming "my wife" as a beneficiary before marriage valid?

england-and-wales If the testator had simply written "my wife" then the bequest would likely fail, because he had no wife at the time of his death. If he had written just "Stella ...
Og8219's user avatar
  • 806
7 votes
Accepted

Can bones be willed to a family member after death?

It would be more common to leave a separate direction regarding the disposition of your body in a document other than your will, entrusted with your next of kin. This is because a dead person's body ...
ohwilleke's user avatar
  • 206k
7 votes

What happens to debts when someone dies?

In common law jurisdictions, you generally cannot inherent a debt. Details vary by jurisdiction, I will use NSW, Australia as an example: Initial ownership on death Liabilities Any joint liabilities (...
Dale M's user avatar
  • 205k
7 votes
Accepted

Can I release all my copyrighted works into the public domain upon my death?

Under US copyright law, all works are protected by copyright except for US Government works. The concept of "public domain" is not legally well-defined, and is used colloquially to refer to government ...
user6726's user avatar
  • 215k
7 votes
Accepted

Protecting myself against my future self

In general, no, if you make a will then you can revoke that will while ever you are still legally competent. Also, in general, this is a good thing. For your first example, you are ruling out all ...
Dale M's user avatar
  • 205k
7 votes

Can I (proactively) prevent someone from leaving me something in a will?

What can I do to prevent someone from leaving me something in their will? Nothing. Allowing other people to legally change someone's will defeats the purpose of a will: To express the writer's last ...
Just a guy's user avatar
  • 8,428
7 votes

What options are there for executor when no close family member is available?

england-and-wales Age UK, a British charity that supports people who are elderly, have this to say on the subject: If you don’t have anyone that you feel would be suitable, or your family and friends ...
Richard's user avatar
  • 4,105
6 votes
Accepted

Can I waive the "slayer statute" in my will?

No. This is not a provision that the testator or testatrix (i.e. the person writing a will) may waive in advance. But, the slayer statute does not get invoked unless an interested person invokes it ...
ohwilleke's user avatar
  • 206k
6 votes

Does my will need to be in legalese?

Can anyone point towards specific cases where someone with a similar will has run into major problems because they wrote a simple will instead of the complex legalese one? Like every case in ...
jqning's user avatar
  • 8,667
6 votes

What are the downsides of using a service like LegalZoom for simple will / living will?

Living Wills A "living will" which is a "pull the plug" document that isn't customized to an individual's preferences (probably 95%+ done by lawyers are not customized anyway) through a service like ...
ohwilleke's user avatar
  • 206k
6 votes
Accepted

Can a will order private property be destroyed?

Interesting question. I routinely write wills that authorize the executor to destroy property that has no significant economic or sentimental value, but I've never encountered a case where a testator ...
ohwilleke's user avatar
  • 206k

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