Can I legally disown my parents as an adult?

UPDATED: Feb 3, 2014

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Can I legally disown my parents as an adult?

I have looked online and many answers have said to simply ignore them and cut ties. However, I have seen majors being involuntarily signed in and out of hospitals by their parents and siblings, so parents and siblings must still have some sort of legal power. I want to be able to cut this power, so if anything happens to me or I die or anything, they are not notified. If anything happens to them, I don’t want anything from them, either. I want to completely cut ties from my parents and sister so they have absolutely no legal power over me whatsoever. Is this possible? Thank you.

Asked on February 3, 2014 under Estate Planning, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

1) You can designate some other person or persons to have the right to make medical decisions for you (e.g. a health care proxy), or property/financial/business/etc. decisions (e.g. an attorney in fact; granted power by a Power of Attorney), if you are incapacitated. By doing so, that person will have the right to make these decisions for you and your family will not. If you don't designate someone to make these decisions for you, however, the law will turn to your next of kin to do so. You should speak with a trusts and estates attorney about creating these forms and designating persons to act on your behalf.

2) You can indicate in your will that your family receives nothing and has no role to play in the administration of your estate, and furthermore that your executor should not have any dealings with them other than as required by any court order or law (you can't order your executor to break the law).. Again, an attorney can help draw this up.

3) You can't stop them from willing, etc. things to you, but you have the right to refuse any bequests, inheritance, gifts, etc.

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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