Can an deceased adult child be disinherited?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022Fact Checked

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Can an deceased adult child be disinherited?

I was with Mike for 12 years and married only 3 short months when he died 5 years ago unexpectedly at 43. He was the youngest of his siblings. Mike was in his mother’s Will. His father passed, I believe, 14 years ago. Mike was to receive his inheritance from his father’s but I don’t believe that he ever did. Well, 3 to 4 months after Mike passed, I learned he was written out of the Will by his mother and his portioned redistributed among his 1 sister and 2 brothers. We did not have children but were planning to. Would I be able to contest her Will as his wife? I was a perfect daughter-in-law and his mother liked me but greed just makes people ugly. She also had a life insurance policy out on him but never told us or offered it to us when we wed. She kept reminding me just after he died that she was the beneficiary and kept the money; I had no idea of its value – I made her pay his taxes that were due out of it as his

Asked on July 10, 2016 under Estate Planning, Connecticut


B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

A deceased adult child can be disinherited if it represents the final wishes of the parent.  Any person can change their will to fit their final wishes any time before they pass away.  It is possible that his mom wrote him out of her will after his death.  Whether he had been deceased or not, she would have had the right to do so.
However, his mom could not have changed his father's will.  This means that if Mike inherited something via his father's will, she could not later undo the gift.  Mike's gift became ripe upon his father's passing assuming that he inherited something via his father's will.  If Mike did inherit an asset, then you may be entitled to a portion of that gift as part of your husband's estate.  To determine how to probate his estate and whether or not it would be cost effective to do so, reach out to a probate attorney. 
With regard to the life insurance policy... if his mom was the only beneficiary, then she would be the only one to receive those proceeds regardless of what the will provided for.

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.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption