To Disinherit a Spouse, You Need a Prenuptial (or Postnuptial) Agreement


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To Disinherit a Spouse, You Need a Prenuptial (or Postnuptial) Agreement

When you disinherit someone, you remove that person from your will or trust, which is simple enough. People sometimes disinherit an adult child for any number of reasons, such as because they have already provided that particular adult child with his or her portion of the inheritance. Because the law dictates that a surviving spouse is automatically entitled to a specific portion of your assets, disinheriting a spouse is a more complicated matter.

Reasons for Disinheriting a Spouse

There are several reasonable rationales for wishing to disinherit a spouse, including:

  • If your spouse has considerable wealth of his or her own, he or she has no need for the inheritance.

  • If this is a second marriage, you may want your assets to go directly to your surviving children (from your previous marriage).

  • There are other extenuating circumstances that have guided your decision.

Unless you have made prior arrangements via the creation of a postnuptial or prenuptial agreement, however, you will not be able to completely disinherit your spouse. For example, many people who enter into second marriages – in which one or both of them has a child from their previous marriages – prearrange their inheritances via a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement.

Your Spouse’s Inheritance

If you were to die without a will, under Texas' intestate succession laws, your spouse would automatically be entitled to a certain portion of your property. How that property is divided, however, depends upon whether the property is community or separate property, to begin with. Community property generally refers to property that you and your spouse acquired together during the course of your marriage – minus any gifts or inheritances.

Prenuptial and Postnuptial Agreements

Discuss Your Prenuptial Agreement with a Dedicated Killeen Family Lawyer Today

Prenuptial and postnuptial agreements can address a wide range of issues that extend beyond divorce. If you have concerns regarding the assets you will leave your surviving loved ones, Brett Pritchard at The Law Office of Brett H. Pritchard in Killeen, Texas, is a dedicated family law attorney who is committed to helping you consider the matter from every angle and helping you find a solution that addresses your specific intentions. Mr. Pritchard has the experience and skill to help, so please do not hesitate to contact or call us at 254-501-4040 for more information today.

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