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Wife and kids got nothing!

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#1
What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? Texas
I received some shocking news yesterday from my brother-in-law regarding my previous husband's death and life insurance proceeds. It appears that my mother-in-law received the payout from my husband's death, and also received everything else from his estate and completely disinherited my kids and also me since we were still married at his time of death. We were seperated and living in different states at his time of death. My question is according to Florida law I should have received a spouses share of what he had even if he named his Mom beneficiary of his life insurance policy. Please
help! I just need to know if I should get a lawyer, and if she can be sued for
taking everything from my children. also if there is a time limit for filing a civil suit. My husband died in 1999, but my children and I were just told this yesterday. My husband was living and working in Florida at his time of death.
 


Just Blue

Senior Member
#2
What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? Texas
I received some shocking news yesterday from my brother-in-law regarding my previous husband's death and life insurance proceeds. It appears that my mother-in-law received the payout from my husband's death, and also received everything else from his estate and completely disinherited my kids and also me since we were still married at his time of death. We were seperated and living in different states at his time of death. My question is according to Florida law I should have received a spouses share of what he had even if he named his Mom beneficiary of his life insurance policy. Please
help! I just need to know if I should get a lawyer, and if she can be sued for
taking everything from my children. also if there is a time limit for filing a civil suit. My husband died in 1999, but my children and I were just told this yesterday. My husband was living and working in Florida at his time of death.

How old are the children? Did Dad have a relationship with the children of the marriage? When was the last time Dad saw said children?

When did you and Dad separate? When did you and the children move out of state? Did you have permission to move the (?) minor children out of state?
 
#3
Yes he had a relatonship with the kids, he would come and get them every holiday and was planiing to pick them up for the summer just weeks before he died! We were separated for about 1 year and a half.
 

Antigone*

Senior Member
#5
If his mother was the beneficiary of his life insurance policy then the money was hers to do with as she chose. She was under no obligation to give your or his children a dime.

He died 11 years ago:eek:. I could see your children wondering if he left them anything but you, :eek: holy cow you were separated!!!
 
#6
What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? Texas
I received some shocking news yesterday from my brother-in-law regarding my previous husband's death and life insurance proceeds. It appears that my mother-in-law received the payout from my husband's death, and also received everything else from his estate and completely disinherited my kids and also me since we were still married at his time of death. We were seperated and living in different states at his time of death. My question is according to Florida law I should have received a spouses share of what he had even if he named his Mom beneficiary of his life insurance policy. Please
help! I just need to know if I should get a lawyer, and if she can be sued for
taking everything from my children. also if there is a time limit for filing a civil suit. My husband died in 1999, but my children and I were just told this yesterday. My husband was living and working in Florida at his time of death.
If you're referring to a spouse's right to elective share of the decedent's estate, I believe that ship has long since sailed.

732.2135 Time of election; extensions; withdrawal.--

(1) Except as provided in subsection (2), the election must be filed on or before the earlier of the date that is 6 months after the date of service of a copy of the notice of administration on the surviving spouse, or an attorney in fact or guardian of the property of the surviving spouse, or the date that is 2 years after the date of the decedent's death.

(2) Within the period provided in subsection (1), the surviving spouse or an attorney in fact or guardian of the property of the surviving spouse may petition the court for an extension of time for making an election. For good cause shown, the court may extend the time for election. If the court grants the petition for an extension, the election must be filed within the time allowed by the extension.
 

nextwife

Senior Member
#8
And, if there was so little contact, how do you KNOW he hadn't completed a divorce? Have you checked county records?

Additionally, do you KNOW there were actually assets at the time of his death over and above creditors share? If you are claiming half rights to his assets, you know, as wife, you'd also have had half responsiibility for his debts? Were his creditors paid off?

How much do you actually know about any probate, and why wouldn't you know the man is dead over a DECADE ago?
 
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#9
And, if there was so little contact, how do you KNOW he hadn't completed a divorce? Have you checked county records?

Additionally, do you KNOW there were actually assets at the time of his death over and above creditors share? If you are claiming half rights to his assets, you know, as wife, you'd also have had half responsiibility for his debts? Were his creditors paid off?

How much do you actually know about any probate, and why wouldn't you know the man is dead over a DECADE ago?
I'm reading the OP as just having just found out about the insurance, not about the ex's death - he was due to pick the kids up for holidays just after he died so surely she tried to find out why he hadn't even if she wasn't immediately notified of his death - but it does seem strange that she didn't raise any questions about estate matters at the time if that's the case.
 
#10
I'm reading the OP as just having just found out about the insurance, not about the ex's death - he was due to pick the kids up for holidays just after he died so surely she tried to find out why he hadn't even if she wasn't immediately notified of his death - but it does seem strange that she didn't raise any questions about estate matters at the time if that's the case.
My husband died in 1999, but my children and I were just told this yesterday. My husband was living and working in Florida at his time of death.
HE died over a decade ago. If there were insurance she thought she'd get, it would surely have lapsed after a decade of non payment, so a claim would have needed to be made a very, very long time ago.
 
#11
Please cite the Florida statute are referring to (either the number or the language of the text).

Who was the person who told you about this (were they a relative or not?) and how much money are we talking about with the policies? Were you informed about his probate or not and were you represented or did you consult with a probate attorney on your own behalf about his estate?

You should especially be consulting with an attorney whose specialty is "bad faith insurance cases" or "insurance company disputes" and who also has experience with insurance company "interpleader" actions where the information is given to a court and the court decides who is eligible for the insurance benefit if there is a dispute. It is probably too late for you to do anything about this--unless you had been previously named as a beneficiary and if there was fraudulent paperwork submitted by his mother to change the beneficiary designation from you to her, then you have no legal recourse.
 
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Betty

Senior Member
#12
Life ins. proceeds pass outside the estate & would go to the beneficiary named in the policy. It is handled different than the rest of the estate which would go through probate.
 
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