Beneficiary without my own will

UPDATED: May 18, 2009

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Beneficiary without my own will

I have been informed by the executor of a deceased relative’s estate that I am beneficiary. I’m married and my husband is already deciding how the money should be used and I disagree. I intend to keep the money in my name only. I intend to see a financial advisor and also make a will so that my children will benefit from this money if I should pre-decease my husband. Is it possible or advisable for me to make a will with a provision for money that I have not yet received, or should I wait until I’ve received it? If I died before I received the money who would get the money?

Asked on May 18, 2009 under Estate Planning, Colorado


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

Answered 13 years ago | Contributor

The money you inherit is yours alone, and if you wish it to remain so, it is a good idea to put it into a separate account with your name only.  You may include it in your will by saying something like, "any and all money inherited by me during my lifetime goes to my children equally", and specify the account or the bank where the money will be located.  If you die before you received the money, it would go to the alternate beneficiary specified in your deceased relative's will.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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